The Water Services Association of Malawi (Wasama) has observed that the recent appointment of the new cabinet has left out the visibility of the water sector.
WASAMA executive director Benedict Chakhame said this in an interview with Nyasa Times arguing that a closer look at the ministries headed by the 20-member cabinet makes one wonder where the water affairs fal under.
He lamented that there is no clear line as to whether water has been pushed to the Ministry Agriculture and Irrigation, the Ministry of Natural Resources or other parastatal which keeps one guessing, a development Wasama feels unhealthy for the water sector.
Chakhame said much as his association applauds the President for the lean cabinet, the association would be impressed to see the water affairs being represented in the ministries.
“While we feel that the water boards are covered under the ministry of statutory corporation, we must consider the other partners in the sector who are equally playing vital roles in promoting water sanitation and hygiene, and these are researchers, academia, financiers and non-governmental orgnisations (NGO’s).
“Globally, the water, sanitation and hygiene (Wash) sector receives more attention unlike here in Malawi,” he said.
Chakhame further appealed to government to rapidly address the gap and advise the sector on the direction.
He said Wasama believes that the country will join the rest of the world in reflecting the decade of
water development (2005-2015) on what has been done in areas of water and sustainable development.
“This program requires more support from government in planning ahead beyond 2015 and that is why we are crying for visibility as a sector in government. The primary goal of Water for Life Decade is to promote
efforts to fulfill international commitments made on water and water-related issues by 2015,” he explained.
He said this is in line with the Millennium Declaration, the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation of the World Summit for Sustainable Development, and Agenda 21 can be achieved.