By Hailegebriel Endeshaw
ADDIS ABABA – (BORKENA) – Experts disclosed that involvement of the private sector is of paramount importance in the activities of drinking water supply and management. Experts that had been participating in an International Water Resource Conference here in Addis Ababa said in an interview they gave to VoA Amharic service that to meet the ever increasing demand of drinking water, the private sector should be involved in the supply and management of drinking water.
The interviewees also said that to meet the demand, the government should reform the water resource policy. Though he did not reflect the idea directly, representative of Water and Energy Minister, Debebe Defersso who attended the conference, pointed out that the government is working to reform the water policy
Various African countries shared their experiences in water use and experts presented research papers at the International Water Conference held in Addis Ababa for two days. One of the research paper presenters who is an instructor and researcher on water resource at South African University, Professor Seifu Kebede said that though Ethiopia is endowed with large water resources (rivers), they cannot be harnessed easily as they pass through hostile terrains
Professor Seifu said that to harness such rivers, it requires a huge amount of financial resources. As this cannot be done by the government singlehandedly, the involvement of the private sector is decisive. The private sector can play roles by participating in the provision of drinking water through the development of the resource.
Ethiopia’s Program Head of Water Witness International, Isaias Samuel said on his part that problems are witnessed in water resource usage and supervision. He underscored the significance of the private sectors’ involvement to meet the growing demand of clean drinking water in Ethiopia.
VoA quoted a previous interview conducted with the Minister of Water and Energy, Hbtamu Iteffa (PhD) who said that it was necessary to think of the involvement of the private sector in the provision of drinking water.
Seven African countries participated in the International Water Conference that was held in Addis Ababa for two days, VoA reported.
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