Water Experts Urged for Collaboration in Nation's Water Resource Utilization


July 04,2022 (ENA) Minister of Water and Energy, Habtamu Itefa called on water experts to protect the water sovereignty of Ethiopia and make the country available abroad.

The minister made the remark at a two-day international conference on Water, Food and Energy Security that kicked off today in Addis Ababa under the theme: “The Role of Science and Communities in Post War Reconstruction.”

In his keynote address, Minister of Water and Energy, Habtamu Itefa said that as water development hugely requires experts and rigorous research, adding: “We need to give a chance to our professionals to influence the policy in Ethiopia.”

He called on all Ethiopian water experts both inside the country and abroad to intensify efforts  to defend the water security of the country.  

The government give focus on addressing the water, energy and food  scarcity following a high population burden and growing urbanization, the minister said.  

However,  this effort requires  enormous  experts'  contribution, he said adding the fact that “the country is pressurized not to utilize its water resources."

“We are not only demanding but also our hands are open for your engagement. ….. Such kind of solidarity is very important from our water experts. Let’s come together and work hard irrespective of any political ideology because our water is our backbone. That is the reason why we have mobilized our scientists.”  

He particularly underlined that Ethiopia is recently facing the negative impacts of climate change and conflict that have been resulted in internal displacement and migration.

In this regard, water development is at the heart of Ethiopia’s policy to avert the protracted challenges of the nation by meeting demands of water, energy and food.

“That will have a clear understanding of developing our water and energy to minimize conflict, to overcome climate change and create resilient communities. Most importantly, this development will enable the community to stay in their village,” he said.

Professor Assefa M. Melesse of Florida International University said that in Ethiopia and other developing countries, water is at the center of major national policies including energy, agriculture, environment and others.

Therefore, he said, experts have to contribute their share that would help Ethiopia to invest in its cross-boundary, surface and groundwater resources.

Assefa, who is also the conference chair said meeting the demands of water, energy and food for a growing global population is a world-wide challenge that is further exacerbated by the uncertainty of climate change impact on water resources, land and water degradation, droughts, poor water governance and land management practices.

“In recent years, we have seen communities in conflict zones to further struggle to meet their water, food and energy demands. Globally, many communities are struggling to meet fundamental water needs for survival.”

This conference entitled “The Role of  Science and Communities  in Post War Reconstruction.” will create a platform for international and national experts to highlight and share local and global experiences on natural resource management, water management, irrigation, flood control, drought management, energy and food production.”

Ethiopian News Agency