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The Ministry of Water and Environment in collaboration with WWF in Uganda and other actors held a one-week engagement roadmap aimed at rallying Ugandans in conserving the environment and embracing a healthy livelihood.
The week also commemorated three sector days: World Water Day, the World Forestry Day and the World Meteorological Day.
The Commissioner for Water Resources at the Ministry of Water and Environment, Dr Callist Tindimugaya, commended WWF for her support in bring on board cultural and religious institutions.
“We originally didn’t have these institutions on board but WWF stressed to us the power that these institutions have in mobilizing the citizens to take actions that favour our environment and water systems at large”, he said citing the pastoral letter that was issued by the Joint Christian Council with support from WWF and the impact it has had.
Other activities rolled out by WWF included a clean-up exercise in the Kyoga Water Management Zone in Eastern Uganda, the Save River Mpanga Marathon in Fortportal, Save River Nyamwamba tree planting exercise in Kasese, among others.
WWF also took part in high level Water policy debates and trainings.
“Water and the environment are like two sides of a coin. Water is part of the environment and we need to have it in good condition. The trees are very important in production of water and the trees also need water to survive”, stated Beria Namanya, the WWF Water Governance Manager during his submissions,
On climate resilience, Dr Callist spoke about the yet to be unveiled program dubbed: Roads for water and water for roads.
“People who construct roads must work closely with officials of the Water ministry. We need to protect the roads from being washed away. We are also working with the Energy ministry people to ensure the hydropower schemes are resilient. We must store the water and control the speed,’’ Dr Tindimugaya said.
WWF Country Director appealed to Government to venture into developing bankable water solutions to guarantee sustainable water financing.
Sustainable financing lies at the heart of many of the solutions to improved water management. Yet securing sustainable finance for this wide range of services is an ongoing struggle for most countries”, he said adding that while the required investment and operating costs are high, the benefits are much higher.
“It is essential for governments to take a strategic approach to financing water investments and services and the development of bankable nature solutions is one such way”, he concluded.