His Excellency Dr. Hussein Ali Mwinyi, President of Zanzibar and Chairman of the Revolutionary Council on Wednesday 5th April formally received the Global Water Changemakers Award which had been presented to him in absentia during the UN Water Conference in New York. H.E Mwinyi, was awarded the local country leadership award alongside the President of Zambia, His Excellency Hakainde Hichilema for leading national efforts in ending water and sanitation challenges following the launch of the Zanzibar Water Investment Programme and the Zambia Water Investment Programme respectively.
Four co-chairs of the International High-Level Panel on Water Investments for Africa; H.E Macky Sall, President of the Republic of Senegal and Chair of the African Union, H.E Hage Geingob, President of Namibia, H.E Mark Rutte, Prime Minister of the Netherlands and H.E Jakaya Kikwete, Former President of the Republic of Tanzania and Global Water Partnership Southern Africa Chairperson each also received the Presidential Global Changemakers Award for demonstrating high-level political commitment and leadership for climate resilient water security in Africa.
The Zanzibar Water Investment Programme supports the implementation of the Zanzibar Development vision 2050 towards achieving the Blue Economy Policy. The Programme is geared toward promoting investment in the sector, strengthening governance, enhancing capacity of various stakeholders, mobilizing resources, and ultimately, ensuring the optimal water supply to all the areas and people of Zanzibar. The Programme is also vital given that water is one of the most essential natural resources needed, as well as for the attainment of all national and international development plans.
“I have received this award with great honour on behalf of the Government and all the citizens of Zanzibar. This award supports the efforts of the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar in bringing changes and reforms in the water sector. It is my hope that the ongoing reforms in the Zanzibar Water Sector will help promote the welfare of society, and the economy, as well as ensure the existence and availability of sustainable clean, and safe water services,” said H.E Mwinyi on receiving the award at the State House in Zanzibar.
The award was formally presented to H.E Mwinyi by His Excellency Jakaya Kikwete, Former President of Tanzania and Global Water Partnership Southern Africa Chairperson, who had received it on the former’s behalf in New York.
“H.E Mwinyi has been given the award in recognition of the special contribution he made personally and that of his government in developing a Water Investment Programme, whose main goal is to have solid strategies to develop the Unguja and Pemba water & sanitation sector,” said H.E Kikwete.
Speaking earlier at the event, Global Water Partnership Tanzania Executive Director Dr. Victor Kongo commended Zanzibar for the progress it had already registered in the one year of implementation of the USD665.5million Investment Programme whose implementation runs from 2022 to 2027.
“The continent of Africa and the whole world recognizes your great contribution in establishing and leading this programme and today we are here to congratulate you for your efforts and for having a great vision in solving Zanzibar's water challenges.
“After the launch of our program, we have seen positive results in a short time including the Ministry coordinating all projects in the water sector, development partners contributing to the programme, and now gaps in the water sector are easily identified and steps have been taken to address these deficiencies. Moving forward, we need to strengthen infrastructure and ensure that every citizen gets clean and safe water,” explained Dr. Kongo.
H.E Mwinyi highlighted that while implementation of the Zanzibar Water Investment Programme is progressing well, there is need to mobilize more funds for to achieve the desired clean and sustainable water supply for the island’s population and fast-growing economy.
H.E Kikwete assured that “the High-level Panel on Water Investments in Africa recognizes the challenge of obtaining financial resources, manpower and equipment to effectively implement the Africa Water Investment Programme including the Zanzibar Water Investment Programme. Therefore, the Panel will launch a special campaign to find resources for the implementation of the AIP in September.
Announcement and presentation of the awards to the six leaders was done on Wednesday March 22, 2023 by H.E. Mokgweetsi Masisi, President of Botswana and Chair of the Water Changemakers Awards during the launch of the International High-Level Panel Report on Water Investments in Africa titled Pathways for Mobilisation of $30 billion Annually by 2030 at the UN Water Conference in New York, the first United Nations conference on water issues since 1977.
The report, which the High-Level Panel developed under the leadership of the African Union Commission in collaboration with AUDA-NEPAD and the Co-Chairs of the High-Level Panel outlines three pathways to secure an additional US$30 billion to achieve water security and sustainable sanitation in Africa by 2030 on the continent:
• Pathway 1. Achieve more impactful water spending and financial leveraging
• Pathway 2. Mobilise Domestic Resources
• Pathway 3. Secure Global and Continental Investment and Finance
The Panel proposes a 5-point Action Plan for Heads of State and governments, business and global leaders, to support the implementation of the three actionable pathways.
The Water Changemakers 2023 is a global challenge to recognize high-level commitment and leadership for climate resilient water investments and showcase the most promising climate resilient innovations with the greatest potential for scale, replication, and further investment to support a water-secure world.
Changemaker Awards includes the Presidential Global Changemaker Award for demonstrated leadership and commitment and Innovation challenge Award for the most promising climate innovations.
The core partners running the awards are the Global Water Partnership, Korea Water Resources Corporation (K-Water), The World Bank Group and the Continental Africa Water Investment Programme.