Ten countries in the Nile Basin have started a regional dialogue on the benefits, risks and vulnerabilities to the peoples in its vicinities.
The meeting is being held in the Ugandan capital Kampala.
The basin is currently said to be affected by human and natural threats characterized by a growing population, droughts and floods.
This trans-boundary resource is said to be at a risk of human encroachment of about 180 million people from the member countries of the Nile basin Initiative (NBI).
The interstates dialogue is aimed at addressing these challenges to achieve sustainable socio-economic development through the equitable utilization of Nile Basin water resources.
“We need to realize the benefits and risks involved in the NBI projects, because they are rolling out soon,” urged Engineer Sottie Bomukama, chairman of the Nile Technical Advisory Committee.
The meeting, held under the theme: “Civil Society’s role in monitoring benefits, risks and vulnerabilities to the basin’s peoples, “seeks action on the ground for sustainable development of its resources.
“The big question is how we to harness these resources to economically, socially and politically meet our needs. Shared responsibility that requires capacity to analyse risks, partnerships and legitimacy of the torch bearers would be the best answer for that,” Bomukama underscored.
“Rwanda has successfully taken a step in required capacity building. We have trained our member organization on environment impact assessment and efficient water resources management,” said Albertine Uwimana, from Nile Basin Discourse, Rwanda.
She added that this training has helped Rwandans to access available funding on the environment and implementation of the projects.
Uwimana said the government is very active in promoting activities of the Nile Basin.
“At present we are in the final stages of completing our project on capacity building. This will help us to address challenges ahead, such as funding.”
Under the interstates shared vision of NBI environment project, 197 micro-grants of about $4.5 million have since then been approved by all member states.