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Innovative solutions to water and sanitation

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By Mercy Kelani

Strategic Planning for Achieving Ministerial Mandate — Managerial Retreat.

In Abuja, during the opening of a three-day Top Management Retreat, Prof. Joseph Utsev, the Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, mentioned that more innovative solutions have been called for by the federal government to restructure the sanitation and water resources sector, according to the initiative of President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda. The retreat was themed “Strategic Planning for Achieving Ministerial Mandate.” Alhaji Bello Goronyo, the Minister of State, who represented Prof. Joseph Utsev, highlighted the opportunities that accompanied the retreat.

He said that the retreat was organized as an opportunity to exchange innovative solutions, best practices and experiences in order to develop water governance in the country. According to Goronyo, accessibility to sanitation services and clean water by all citizens can be built by Nigeria, which will increase the thriving of the environment for future generations. He highlighted that many challenges have faced Nigeria, ranging from climate change to population growth. However, he said it is the responsibility of the ministry to surpass these difficulties, and initiate innovative remedies.

Development of action plans and strategies in the ministry.

Speaking optimistically, he said that Nigeria can improve through strategic partnerships. Development of action plans and strategies will enhance a significant development in the water sector across Nigeria. He declared his confidence that the retreat will equip them to grow the mandate and not only tackle the challenges, and at the same time, it will energize their resolve to establish a good impact in the sanitation and water resources sector. Therefore, he called for collaboration to ensure that citizens gain access to proper sanitation facilities and clean water.

Additionally, another impact of the collaboration will be the strategy of ensuring sustainable irrigation practices for a more prosperous and healthier future. From Utsev’s speech, a brief insight into the retreat was given to enhance developed accessibility to flood management, climate change, dam and irrigation, sanitation and clean water. He announced that the challenges have been addressed in line with the eight presidential target areas. Thus, the retreat was indeed a significant move towards attaining them.

Strategies should align with shared vision and expanded mandate.

The participants were implored by the minister to develop plans and strategies that will restructure the policies of the ministry. He stated that the strategies should align with the shared vision and expanded mandate for a prosperous future. The minister also urged the participants to abort sentiments, and make sure that the Standard Operating Procedures, mandates, mission, vision and functions of the ministry were in line appropriately with the focus areas of the present administration. Dr. Didi Walson-Jack, the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, stressed the importance of the role of the ministry.

Dr. Walson-Jack said that the responsibility of the ministry in guaranteeing the sustainable management of water resources in the country through the medium of providing access to clean and safe water was essential. She stated that addressing different issues, such as challenges related to water supply, sanitation, irrigation and water-related hazards should be everyone’s responsibility. She added that the retreat is now required to reposition and restrategise the ministry to ensure delivery on its expanded mandate, due to re-designation.

Enhancement of innovative thinking, knowledge sharing & partnership.

She announced that focus will be placed on the federal ministry of water resources and sanitation’s programmes, alongside other major mandate and policies that defines the work of the ministry. She added that there were contributions from the structure, mandate, mission and vision of the ministry towards the development and management of water resources as they guided the actions and programmes. The permanent secretary declared that the retreat will enhance innovative thinking, knowledge sharing and partnership. Hence, Walson-Jack stated that the mentioned factors will develop practicable strategies to attain the objectives and goals of the ministry.

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