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Ardent coordination among partners crucial to ensure water, energy provisions

Addis Ababa, June 26, 2023 (FBC) – Strong coordination is required with multi stakeholders to ensure access to water and energy services to a large number of the population, according to Ministry of Water and Energy.

Speaking at the 11th water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) and water resource management and energy multi stakeholder forum, Minister of Water and Energy, Habtamu Itafa, said the demands for water in Ethiopia is high including for electricity.

He added that population growth and climate change remain critical challenge, to which the government of Ethiopia has been embarking on green legacy initiative which contributes to development of water resource.

Habtamu added that this can be managed through the involvement of development partners as they are playing a crucial role in supplying of water and energy.

He urged partners who invested in the area to further strengthen coordination to solve the deficit of water, sanitation and energy in Ethiopia.

For clean household, clean environment, reliable water and affordable energy, we have to work together, he said.

The government of Ethiopia has been working to ensure access to water and sanitation, which also is incorporated in the Ten Year Development Plan.

Minister of Health, Dr. Lia Tadesse, on her part, said that poverty cannot be eradicated without universal access to water, sanitation and hygiene.

Despite a long way to go, Ethiopia has made substantial progress over the past decades in increasing access to these basic services in both rural, semi urban and urban populations.

The WASH national program has provided water and sanitation facilities in public areas including schools, health and industrial institutions, she said, adding that the area still requires a lot of investments to work together.

She noted that access to energy and renewable energy and sustainable energy is also key issue particularly for the health sector.

The health minister added that this forum would help strengthen cooperation with partners and to implement joint project and monitoring mechanism.

The United States Agency for International Development Ethiopia (USAID) Acting Mission Director, Timothy Stein said reaching everyone everywhere with clean water, put sanitation services, hygiene and education requiring strong coordination and partnership.

He added that USAID and all development partners should continue to strengthen water and energy provisions, demonstrating strong partnership among government organizations.

In energy sector, Ethiopia has made great strides in accelerating access to electricity; to which we should continue to work with the government of Ethiopia to address key finance gaps and increase access to sustainable water and sanitation services both in urban and rural areas, the acting director said.

According to the acting director, USAID has allocated 65 million USD investment in the next five years, where over 500 thousand people will have access to basic water services and 350 thousand people to gain access to sanitation services.

It was noted that the forum created an opportunity in the water and energy sector to review policy, achievement and share experience.

According to ENA, the theme of this multi stakeholder forum is “accelerated implementation and improved impacts towards SDGs.”

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