The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) has approved the 2016 annual report and 2017 work plan and budget of the African Water Facility (AWF) to use €1.925 million.
A statement issued by Osward Chanda, OIC Director, Water and Sanitation Department/African Water Facility and copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the amount was for the administrative budget of AWF out of the special water fund for 2017 activities.
It would also contribute to meeting the challenges of the activities in the 2017 budget including resource mobilisation, operations, strategic review, documenting and disseminating results and knowledge emanating from AWF operations.
The budget would also cater for other activities including; building human resources, enhancing communications, visibility and outreach through greater use of social media tools and participation in key international water events.
The statement said the AWF would continue to engage with AMCOW and other development partners to better coordinate and harmonise its activities.
It said the board members underscored progress made by the AWF despite funding challenges and urged other facilities facing similar contests to learn from it.
At its annual meeting in December 2016 in Abidjan, the AWF Governing Council approved the long-term strategy 2017 to 2025; and noted that the AWF continued to face human resources and core funding challenges as it was unable to ensure continuity of operations beyond 2017.
However, it said there was light at the end of the tunnel with pledged funding from Canada and ongoing discussions with Austria, NDF and BMGF to replenish their funding to the AWF Special Fund.
The Vice-President in charge of Agriculture, Human and Social Development, Jennifer Blanke, was quoted as saying that AWF had achieved a great work in preparing to finance projects and increasing the delivery capacity of implementing agencies in member countries.
“The AWF has the framework to increase our delivery capacity in water related operations beyond what we are doing currently.
“We will need the Bank’s continued financial support to make this leap in the AWF operations,” she said.
For his part, the Bank Group Senior Vice-President, Charles Boamah who chaired the Board meeting expressed support for the idea of cost recovery mechanism being introduced in AWF’s new strategy and recommended closer collaboration with African Legal Resource Facility which had made some progress on the same issue.