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World Water Day Celebration in ESwatini
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The Incomati and Maputo Watercourse Commission (INMACOM) in collaboration with UN Agencies, local and international water and sanitation partners has  joined the globe in commemorating  the World Water Day on 27th March, 2024 at the Mavuso Trade Center. 

The World Water Day is celebrated annually every 22 March since 1993, to advocate for the preservation and management of freshwater resources. World Water Day, is a global initiative backed by the United Nations to highlight the importance of fresh water for our planet and the need to combat its scarcity around the world

The United Nations releases a World Water Development Report (WWDR) each year, moreover emphasizing the relevance of water; World Water Day is also about spreading awareness regarding the clean water crisis that the entire world is facing. 

In 2023, the World Water Day day was celebrated under the theme “accelerating change”. Under this theme,  water users were encouraged to change the way they use water. This year’s World Water Day is celebrated under the theme “Water for Peace”. This theme focusses on the role water plays in the stability and prosperity of the world.

This year’s theme speaks volumes in relation to the mandate of INMACOM  as the entity is tasked with the primary responsibility to promote cooperation between all three member states in order to ensure the development, protection and sustainable utilisation of the water resources shared by the three member states being the Kingdom of Eswatini, Republic of Mozambique, and Republic of South Africa.

More than 3 billion people worldwide depend on transboundary water resources. There are 153 countries that share water resources. However, only 24 of these countries have cooperation agreements in respect of the water resources they share. It is often said that water is life. When water is scarce, tensions can arise between communities and countries hence, equitable sharing of water resources is critical to promote peace.  

In 2015 the United Nations adopted the 2030 Agenda on Sustainableb Development. This is a plan of action to end poverty and hunger, protect the environment and protect the planet from degradation and to ensure that all human beings can enjoy prosperous and fulfilling lives and to foster peace.

The Kingdom of Eswatini shares transboundary water resources with the Republic of Mozambique and the Republic of South Africa. These countries have created structures that govern the sharing of the transboundary water resources. The  Incomati and Maputo Water Course Commission (INMACOM) is between the three countries and it is in respect of the Komati and the Maputo river basins. The Joint Water Commission with Mozambique is in respect of the Mbuluzi river basin and Joint Water Commission with South Africa is in respect the Komati and Lomati river basins. The cooperation of these countries contributes to foster peace.

The Honourable Minister for Natural Resources and Energy HRH Prince Lonkhokhela was the guest of honour during the event, which was also attended by Senior Government and Private Sector officials. 

The Minister emphasized that Under the theme “Water for Peace”, the country seeks to take stock of the strides it has made in the development of water sharing agreements with the neighbouring countries as well the commitmenr to honour these agreements.  

“His Majesty’s Government is making a priority to provide clean water for all by the year 2030 in line with Sustainable Development Goal No. 6 on universal access to water and sanitation as well as the National Development Strategy (NDS). In order to meet this goal,  the Ministry ensures that no one is left behind,” said the Minister. 

The Minister applauded the role played by civil society in the management and sustainable use of water resources. “Technological advances and new trends in water resources management and development call for active participation of research institutions in the water sector,” said the Prince.

Efforts to mainstream gender in water resources development and management were highly appreciated by the Minister. “The country is grateful for the Regional Gender Mainstreaming Strategy which is being rolled out in the different member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to ensure an inclusive approach on issues of water resources development and management,” The Minister alluded.

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