USAID committee ends retreat
The United States Agency for International Development in Nigeria (USAID) recently launched Community of Practice (CoP) for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene(WASH) has ended its retreat in Abuja, aimed at improving the delivery of basic services in the sector.
The 14-man CoP steering committee (SC) comprises a group of professionals with vested interest in urban WASH that will ensure CoP is acknowledge –focused platform, disseminate practical information and best practices in Nigeria. The WASH Coordination Project (WCP) is being supervised in Nigeria by USAID financed Development Innovation Group (DIG).
In 2015, the World Bank published a performance assessment report on State Water Agencies (SWAs) in Nigeria. This report led to discussion among donors including USAID, the World Bank and African Development Bank and the Federal Ministry of Water Resources on the need for an urban WASH-CoP.
Consequently, the SC set up by WCP team in collaboration with USAID and the Federal Government was inaugurated in August by the Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu during the 24th regular meeting of the National Council of Water Resources in Akure, Ondo State.
The Director, Water Supply and Public Private Partnerships, Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Benson Ajisegiri, an engineer, who doubles as an advisor to the SC, pledged the support of the government towards ensuring the committee meet its objectives and provide independent assessment of the water sector.
He noted that the Nigeria water sector is in crisis, and such platform will be a bail out for the utilities, assist the ministry to provide survelliance and share knowledge. According to him, the ministry has began performance valuation of the utilities and benchmarking them.
‘’USAID subsequently agreed to sponsor the creation of a CoP to support SWAs in the effort to develop, disseminate, and assess technical information with regards to the commercialization of water utilities. By promoting cooperation, communication, and information sharing among utilities, notably through a CoP, USAID expects to accelerate reforms in the sector,’’ according to Timeyin Uwejamomere, WCP Chief of Party.
He explain that the two-day retreat is meant to build common understanding of the SC and clarify CoP strategy as well as develop it into a sustained knowledge sharing platform.
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