Equity needed in Nile River accords

Editor, It is my belief that the waters of the River Nile should be shared fairly by all the peoples of the Nile river valley. That is why I am happy that our Environment Minister, Stanislas Kamanzi, has gone to Uganda to join other top officials from seven of the nine Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) member countries to move forward with the signing of a pact of equitable sharing of the River Nile water, and in the process disregard an Egypt-Sudan boycott.
The Nile River Basin
The Nile River Basin

Editor,

It is my belief that the waters of the River Nile should be shared fairly by all the peoples of the Nile river valley. That is why I am happy that our Environment Minister, Stanislas Kamanzi, has gone to Uganda to join other top officials from seven of the nine Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) member countries to move forward with the signing of a pact of equitable sharing of the River Nile water, and in the process disregard an Egypt-Sudan boycott.

The pact, called the Nile ‘Cooperative Framework Agreement’ (CFA), will seek to establish a permanent Nile River Basin commission which will set clear procedures for water sharing and replacing the two widely disputed colonial-era pacts.

The pact, signed in 1929, between Egypt and Britain unfairly gave Egypt veto power over any upstream project, as well as access to most of the Nile waters.

That means that if any other Nile Basin nation wants to build a dam or make an irrigation project, they must ask Egypt first. That is against every principle of equity known to man.

The waters come from our borders, and run through our borders, yet we can’t use this same water! How unjust! Its unjust that Egypt would want to maintain its 55.5 billion cubic meters share of the river and veto power over any new irrigation projects undertaken by the other states.

I think it’s high time that the Egyptians and Sudanese came to the negotiating table and treated the other Nile Basin nations as equals.

Sam Rwego
Kimihurura

 

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