11 TY Danjuma Street, Abuja Nigeria

+234 9096074166

Category: News


Introductory Meeting with AMCOW Knowledge Management Focal Points

The African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) has organised an introductory meeting for its first batch of knowledge management (KM) focal persons from 13 member states. It is a significant step forward in its commitment to enhancing KM in the water and sanitation sector. This initiative aligns with the Africa Water and Sanitation Knowledge Management Challenge, launched by AMCOW during the Stockholm World Water Week 2021.

26 Focal Points (14 males, 12 females) attended the meeting, representing Egypt, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Gambia, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, South Sudan, Togo, Botswana, and Rwanda. These professionals bring diverse expertise in water supply engineering, general water research, groundwater research, hydrogeology, international relations, water resources development, urban sanitation, data management, geology, knowledge management, and more.

The introductory meeting aimed to welcome the KM Focal Points, familiarise them with the Africa Water and Sanitation KM Challenge and outline the upcoming activities. In his opening remarks, Dr Rashid Mbaziira, the Executive Secretary of AMCOW, represented by Patrice Leumeni, AMCOW’s Monitoring and Reporting Lead, emphasised the importance of the initiative. The Focal Points will undergo training in KM principles and practices and develop country-specific KM strategies. Their contributions will help create a continental Knowledge Agenda for Africa’s water and sanitation sector. They will also help to drive the broader awareness and use of the yearly Africa Water and Sanitation Sector Monitoring (WASSMO) Report produced by AMCOW. Dr Mbaziira also expressed his desire for the Focal Points to actively participate in AMCOW’s sub-regional consultations to deepen their understanding of AMCOW’s programmes.

The meeting featured presentations that provided an overview of AMCOW, the composition of activities within the Knowledge Management Challenge, and subsequent implementation plans. Additionally, the Focal Points were informed that they would also serve as drivers for gender and youth inclusion in their respective countries, where such initiatives may not yet be in place.

An exciting highlight of the meeting was the realisation that the Focal Points would play a vital role in fostering robust south-south collaboration, knowledge creation, and exchange among AMCOW member state through the outlined initiatives. AMCOW Secretariat, in cooperation with its partners, will continue to cultivate and strengthen this initiative while also mobilising the participation of other member states to achieve the target nomination of 110 focal points (two from each country, one male and one female). The Knowledge Management Challenge was launched by the Honourable Minister of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform, Republic of Namibia and AMCOW President 2020-2022, H E Carl Hermann Schlettwein. Water This introductory meeting marks a significant milestone in AMCOW’s ongoing commitment to improving African water and sanitation practices through enhanced knowledge management. The dedication and expertise of the Focal Points will play a crucial role in achieving the goals of the Africa Water and Sanitation KM Challenge, contributing to sustainable development across the continent.


Day 1 of AMCOW’s 13th General Assembly Sparks Expectancy and Renewed Commitment to Africa’s Water Vision

Over 41 African Member States gathered today at the African Ministers’ Council on Water’s (AMCOW) 13th General Assembly in Cairo, Egypt. The highly anticipated event, held under the esteemed leadership of Dr Tahani Sileet, Chairperson of AMCOW’s Technical Advisory Committee, saw the participation of Technical Advisory Committee members from 41 countries and various partners.

The General Assembly began with captivating opening remarks from esteemed personalities, setting the stage for an impactful meeting. Dr Rashid Mbaziira, Executive Secretary of AMCOW, presented the Governance Framework and Rules of Procedures, providing a solid foundation for the statutory meetings. The discussions that followed were nothing short of remarkable.

(From left to right) Engr Tahani Sileet, Head of Central Department for External Cooperation Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation
The Arab Republic of Egypt and AMCOW TAC Chair, Dr Rashid Mbaziira, AMCOW Executive Secretary

Participants were treated to an inspiring documentary film – An Overview of AMCOW – that shed light on the history and purpose of AMCOW. The film eloquently captured the motivations of AMCOW’s founding leaders and emphasised the critical value of water. Notably, Mr Bai Mas Tall, the first substantive Executive of AMCOW, passionately proclaimed that AMCOW stands as the only Ministerial Council on Water worldwide.

Buoyed up by these powerful anecdotes, attendees delved into other crucial presentations, including the AMCOW Strategy 2018-2030, the 2022 Annual Report on the Implementation of the July 2008 Assembly Declaration (also known as the Africa Water and Sanitation Monitoring Report), the Audit Report on the Financial Statement for the Year ended 31st December 2022, and 2023. The revised AMCOW Gender and Youth Inclusion Strategy took centre stage, garnering extensive attention as it neared adoption and presentation to the Council of Ministers. Ensuring that the strategy genuinely reflected the voice of the Member States became a shared priority.

According to Dr Tahani, the urgency to facilitate action on achieving the water and sanitation goals of the continent cannot be overemphasised. Hence this 13th Ordinary Session of the General Assembly at this time.

Following a rejuvenating health break, participants invested significant time deliberating the Action on Water Adaptation and Resilience (AWARe) initiative and AMCOW’s involvement at the UN 2023 Water Conference. These conversations illuminated the regional and national priorities embedded in AMCOW’s work programmes.

Moreover, the meeting addressed the importance of increasing Member States’ involvement in AMCOW’s programs and the need to sustain initiatives within AMCOW even as they evolve into institutionalised entities. The sense of unity and shared commitment among participants fueled anticipation for the outcomes of this gathering.

As the 13th General Assembly unfolds, hopes run high for its transformative impact on the water sector. The post-2025 Africa Water Vision is set to receive a substantial boost, with countries eagerly raising their priorities and embracing an invigorated drive towards its realisation. AMCOW remains steadfast in its mission to guide and implement strategies that ensure Africa’s water resources are managed sustainably and inclusively.

This General Assembly is a testament to African Member States’ enduring dedication and collective determination to overcome water challenges and create a brighter future for the continent. With renewed energy and shared aspirations, AMCOW marches towards a future where clean water and sanitation are accessible to all Africans.


AMCOW Secretariat discusses with Kenya plans for its 13th General Assembly

We are excited to announce that the Executive Secretary of the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW), Dr Rashid Mbaziira, recently visited Kenya to discuss plans for the upcoming 13th General Assembly of the Governing Council.

The General Assembly is a crucial event for AMCOW as it provides an opportunity for the African Ministers responsible for water to come together and discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the water sector in Africa. Hosted by the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Ordinary Session will hold from 13-15 June – with two major sessions comprising a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) Session and a Ministerial Session.

(From left to right) Executive Secretary of AMCOW, Dr Rashid Mbaziira and Kenya Cabinet Secretary (CS), Hon Alice Wahome.

During his visit, Dr Mbaziira met with AMCOW’s EXCO Member and Vice President of the Eastern Africa Region, CS Hon Alice Wahome.

The meeting was held on 26th March and was focused on discussing the preparations for the upcoming General Assembly. Dr Mbaziira and CS Hon Alice Wahome discussed various plans and strategies to ensure the success of the General Assembly. They also discussed the importance of ensuring the event is inclusive and representative of all African countries.

We are confident that the upcoming General Assembly will be a success, thanks to the hard work and dedication of the Arab Republic of Egypt and EXCO Members.

We look forward to welcoming the African Ministers responsible for water to the 13th General Assembly of the Governing Council of the African Ministers’ Council on Water.

We will provide more updates on this significant event.


Africa Water Facility Publishes its 2023 Newsletter

Africa Water Facility Newsletter

The African Water Facility (AWF) has published the first issue of its 2023 newsletters. Under the theme ‘working for water’, the newsletter underlines the need to continue to deploy resources across sectors and industries to achieve access to water and sanitation for all in Africa.

In this first edition of the 2023 newsletter, you’ll find news on AWF’s updated investment case, knowledge management products, an overview of the Africa Urban Sanitation Investment Initiative (AUSII) – a sanitation window to be hosted by the AWF, some highlights of AWF’s activities and industry moments in the first quarter of 2023, and more.

To read the newsletter in English or French, download it via the links below:

Africa Water Facility Newsletter 2023

La Facilité africaine de l’eau (FAE) a publié le premier numéro de sa lettre d’information 2023. Sous le thème “Travailler pour l’eau”, elle souligne la nécessité de continuer à déployer des ressources à travers les secteurs et les industries afin d’assurer l’accès à l’eau et à l’assainissement pour tous en Afrique.

 Dans ce bulletin, vous trouverez des informations sur le dossier d’investissement actualisé de la FAE, des produits de gestion des connaissances, un aperçu de l’Initiative d’investissement pour l’assainissement urbain en Afrique (AUSII) – une fenêtre d’assainissement qui sera hébergée par la FAE, quelques points forts des activités de la FAE et des moments forts de l’industrie au cours du premier trimestre 2023, et bien d’autres choses encore.

 Pour lire la lettre d’information en anglais ou en français, téléchargez-la via les liens ci-dessous:


Furthering Commitments to Transboundary Water Cooperation in Africa

ENTEBBE, Uganda – On May 25, 2023, a four-day high-level meeting was held at the Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort in Kampala, culminating in the si­gning of the Kampala Declaration on Transboundary Water Resour­ces Management in Africa. This pi­oneering gathering, organised by the African Network of Basin Or­ganizations (ANBO) in collabora­tion with NBI, African Ministers‘ Council on Water (AMCOW), GIZ, and the World Bank, aimed to fos­ter closer cooperation among these institutions. The focus was enhan­cing their organisational capacities and increasing their responsiveness to the continent‘s pressing water needs.

The Kampala Declaration commits several key stakeholders, including the African Ministers‘ Council on Water (AMCOW), the African Re­gional Communities (RECs), the African Network of Basin Organiz­ations (ANBO), the River and Lake Basin Organisations (RLBOs), the African Development Bank, and other Development Partners, to specific actions:

  1. Strengthen Collaboration: The declaration‘s signatories will work towards reinforcing collaboration mechanisms between River and Lake Basin Organisations. By doing so, they can ensure more effective management of shared water resources, paving the way for socio-economic development in Africa.
  2. Leverage Resources: Deve­lopment Partners will provide technical and financial resources through existing and new coope­ration arrangements to support transboundary water manage­ment. This collaborative effort will be instrumental in achieving regi­onal and global goals, including the African Union Agenda 2063, Africa Water Vision 2025, and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially SDG 6 and its targets.
  3. Investment in Transboundary Projects: Efforts to invest in trans­boundary projects will be inten­sified, aligning with regional and global goals. This approach will fa­cilitate progress toward key deve­lopment objectives and enhance water, energy, and food security while protecting the environment.
  4. Collaboration in Data and In­formation Services: The stake­holders recognise the critical role of data and information services in informed decision-making. By strengthening cooperation in this area, they aim to improve knowledge-based decision-ma­king processes across the conti­nent.
  5. Institutionalise High-Level Engagements: The heads of River and Lake Basin Organisations will engage in regular high-level inter­actions to assess progress, share lessons, and prioritise actions. The institutionalisation of these en­gagements will be supplemented by annual meetings to be con­ducted under the auspices of the Governing Council of the AMCOW Executive Committee.
Group photograph of a cross-section of key partners and members of the high table during the stakeholders’ engagement on transboundary water cooperation in Africa, Kampala, Uganda.

The meeting commenced with the opening remarks by the Rt. Hon. Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga, First De­puty Prime Minister and Minister of East African Community Affairs, who emphasised the need for ade­quate water governance at appro­priate levels. Professor Patrick Oti­eno Lumumba delivered a stirring keynote address, highlighting the importance of unity among river and lake basin organisations and the significance of self-reliance.

Representatives from Develop­ment Partners, including Anders Jägerskog and Dr Malte Grossman, underscored the value of trans­boundary water cooperation in preventing conflicts and building climate resilience—the President of the African Network of Basin Orga­nizations, Eng. Sylvester Matemu, highlighted the critical role of coo­peration in achieving water, energy, food security and environmental protection.

The closing remarks by Hon. Be­atrice Atim Anywar, Uganda‘s State Minister for Water and En­vironment, emphasised adopting a cooperative approach to tack­le the threats to water resources. Dr Rashid Mbaziira, the Executi­ve Secretary of AMCOW, called on stakeholders to implement the commitments outlined in the Kam­pala Declaration and institutiona­lise this high-level gathering as an annual event for monitoring pro­gress.

The meeting concluded with an excursion to Jinja, where the dele­gates visited the Source of the Nile River and a hydroelectric power plant, further highlighting the im­portance of sustainable water re­source management.

The Kampala Declaration marks a pivotal step towards greater trans­boundary water cooperation in Af­rica. The commitments made by key stakeholders demonstrate their dedication to addressing the region‘s pressing water challen­ges and working collaboratively for sustainable development and env­ironmental preservation. By acting on these commitments and insti­tutionalising the annual gathering, African nations can foster a future of shared prosperity and resilience through cooperative management of their precious water resources.

Click here to download the Kampala Declaration.


Titbit: Tunisia holds its first-ever public-private partnership in the water sector

Did you know Tunisia held its first Public-Private Partnership in the water sector with the Suez?

On 26 April, the Suez group teamed up with a state-owned office in Tunisia to clean up wastewater in a southern region that serves almost a million people.

In the collaboration between the Suez group and the state-owned office called Onas, Suez will operate the public sanitation service for several governorates and treat wastewater for the inhabitants of those regions.

This project is meant to help the economic and social development of the country’s south and deal with environmental challenges. The contract is worth 200 million euros and will last for ten years. The World Bank will finance the rehabilitation and extension of the infrastructures, while the Tunisian state will finance their operation and maintenance. The partnership will work on renovating existing equipment and allow wastewater reuse in agriculture while releasing better quality water into the environment.

This is the first public-private partnership in the water sector in Tunisia, and Suez hopes it will make the country a reference for sanitation management on the African continent.


Summary of AMCOW’s Participation in the UN 2023 Water Conference

In March 2023, delegates from around the world convened at the United Nations Headquarters in New York for the UN 2023 Water Conference. AMCOW, the African Ministers’ Council on Water, played a crucial role in shaping the discussions and outcomes of the conference, showcasing Africa’s commitment to water security and sanitation for all.

One of the highlights was the AMCOW/OSAA side event, a collaboration between AMCOW and the United Nations Office of the Special Adviser on Africa. This event addressed sustainable water availability for all purposes, emphasising the importance of water access and management.

Another significant moment was the official launch of the Team Europe Initiative. AMCOW was pivotal in supporting this initiative to enhance collaboration between Africa and Europe in tackling water-related challenges.

A significant highlight was the launch of the 2022 Report on the ‘Implementation of the July 2008 Sharm el-Sheikh Declaration.’ This report, compiled with contributions from 44 Member States, responds to AMCOW’s mandate from the African Union Heads of State and Government to report yearly on the State of Water and Sanitation in Africa. It provides valuable insights that position Africa to build a better Africa Water Vision, particularly as we approach the post-2025 period.

Furthermore, AMCOW partners and Member States organised several side events, providing valuable platforms for knowledge exchange, sharing best practices, and showcasing innovative water management and sanitation solutions.

AMCOW also engaged in bilateral meetings with government officials, international organisations, and financial institutions throughout the conference. These meetings fostered important dialogues, explored collaboration opportunities, and strengthened partnerships.

AMCOW extends its gratitude to Member States, the leadership of partner institutions, and all participants for their invaluable contributions, which shaped the outcomes of the conference.

AMCOW appreciates the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs for the opportunity to participate in this conference, amplifying Africa’s voice and commitment to water security and sanitation for all. Together with stakeholders, AMCOW is determined to implement the outcomes of the UN 2023 Water Conference and work towards a sustainable future.

To download our full Briefing Note, go to AMCOW Knowledge Hub:


Sector Leaders Launch the 2022 Africa Water and Sanitation Report

The African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) has released the 2022 Report of the “Implementation of the July 2008 Sharm el-Sheikh Declaration (Assembly/AU/Decl.1 (XI)). This version has been compiled with contributions from 44 Member States through the conduction of self-assessments.

The 2022 Africa Water and Sanitation Report marks a significant milestone for Africa’s water and sanitation sector. Recognised and supported by key stakeholders, the report provides a comprehensive overview of the continent’s current state of water and sanitation. By offering valuable insights and recommendations, the 2022 Africa Water and Sanitation Report aims to inspire a revolution in Africa’s water and sanitation sector.

Endorsed by African Ministers responsible for water in October 2022, the WASSMO Report was officially launched during the prestigious UN 2023 Water Conference in New York in March. Esteemed representatives from the African Union, Member States, the African Development Bank, and other partners have praised the report, recognising its significance in implementing commitments to water and sanitation.

(From left to right) African Development Bank Director Water Development and Sanitation, Osward M. Chanda, Minister of Water Resources, Nigeria, H E Suleiman Adamu, H.E. Amb. Josefa L. Sako. Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment African Union Commission (AUC), Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation, Egypt, Prof Dr Hani Sewilam, the Special Adviser, UN Office of the Special Adviser on Africa (OSAA) Cristina Duarte, Minister of Water and Sanitation (South Africa), HE Senzo Mchunu, Minister of Water and Energy Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, H E Habtamu Itefa Geleta, AMCOW Executive Secretary, Dr Rashid Mbaziira.

Launching the Report marks a significant step in addressing the challenges and opportunities in Africa’s water and sanitation sector. By offering valuable insights, recommendations, and comprehensive data, the report aims to inspire change in the management and provision of water and sanitation services in Africa. The goal of ensuring access to safe and reliable water and sanitation services for all Africans can be achieved through collaboration and collective efforts. Let us join hands together to improve Africa’s water and sanitation landscape.

Click the image to download the 2022 Africa Water and Sanitation Report

Beyond mere statistics, the 2022 Water and Sanitation Report provides a comprehensive overview of the achievements, challenges, and critical recommendations for the future of water and sanitation in Africa. As significant actors in the sector, AMCOW believes this report will be indispensable for individuals and organisations seeking to impact water and sanitation positively.

Cite the WASSMO Data

Cite the Africa Water and Sanitation Report in your discussions, presentations and other materials to raise awareness and deepen the understanding of the vital issues surrounding water and sanitation in Africa. The ultimate goal is to ensure that safe and reliable water and sanitation services reach every corner of the continent.

Download your copies in French and English.

Click the links to watch our YouTube videos: English video and the French version.


AMCOW and partners advance sanitation at the 21st AfWASA Congress and 7th FSM.

Abidjan, Ivory Coast – February 25, 2023

The 21st International Congress and Exhibition of the African Water Association (AfWA) and the 7th International Faecal Sludge Management Alliance presented a strategic platform for advancing African sanitation. This joint effort, held in Abidjan from February 19 to 23, marked the first time the two congresses converged under the theme, “Acting for sustainable resources management and access for all to water and sanitation in Africa.”

A Group Photograph of AfricaSan International Task Force (AITF) Members

AMCOW participated prominently in the congress to contribute to shaping the conference’s outcomes and to promote Africa’s sanitation agenda among broader water and sanitation actors.

Central to the outcomes of AMCOW’s involvement was the presentation of the 2022 Africa Water and Sanitation Sector Monitoring (WASSMO) Report in commitment to strengthening national data systems. Progress in utilising the African Sanitation Policy Guidelines (ASPG) was shared, including   Member States and implementing partners’ experiences. Also, AMCOW and the AfricaSan International Task Force (AITF) organised an AfricaSan7 preparatory meeting to determine the conference subthemes and share roles among partners for more effective coordination.

To crown it all, AMCOW and UNICEF delivered training to members of the Partner-Coordination and Engagement Platform (PCEP) to enhance their understanding of safely managed sanitation and hygiene practices.

AITF’s Preparation Ahead of the Seventh AfricaSan Conference

A cross-section of member states delegates in a group session during the AfricaSan7 Preparatory Consultation on the sidelines of the AfWA Congress.

Some highlights of AMCOW’s activities during the congress are as follows:

  1. Opening and Closing Plenary: AMCOW delivered a keynote address urging support for the ASPGs in Action initiative and received encouragement from AfWASA and FSMA to take ownership of commitments in the Blue Deal for Water Security and Sanitation.
  2. Catalysing the actions for sanitation and hygiene policy reforms: A technical session focused on evidence-based data systems for sanitation and hygiene reforms.
  3. Presentation of progress on adapting and implementing the African Sanitation Policy Guidelines (ASPGs): Here, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation emphasised the need for effective coordination in strengthening the policy environment for sanitation and hygiene.
  4. Accelerating Progress to Safe Sanitation for All – a session co-organised by UNICEF and AMCOW focusing on global initiatives with the SDG6 framework: Here, partners demonstrated their contributions to governance, data and information, capacity development, and innovation.
  5. Training of Partner Coordination Platform (PCEP): AMCOW, in collaboration with UNICEF, facilitated a training session on safely managed sanitation, enhancing ASPG utilization among PCEP members.
  6. City-Wide Inclusive Sanitation (CWIS) Platform of Dialogue: AMCOW took a leading role in data and sanitation policy-related matters during this side meeting, bringing together global partners.
  7. Strengthening Partnership and Facilitating Dialogue: Six bilateral meetings were held with partners, focusing on collaborative initiatives and knowledge exchange.
AMCOW, ESAWAS, AfWASA, UN-HabitatPASA, and BMGF in a discussion on strengthening purpose-driven data for water supply and sanitation.

AMCOW’s AfWA and FSMA congress engagement promoted sanitation and hygiene efforts across Africa. It increased awareness, inspired collaboration, and provided a platform for showcasing best practices, ultimately contributing to the continent’s progress towards universal access to safely managed sanitation. The upcoming AfricaSan7 conference, with its finalized themes and engaged sector representatives, promises to be a crucial milestone in furthering these efforts. AMCOW’s commitment to partnerships and dialogue positions it as a key player in shaping the future of water and sanitation in Africa.


AMCOW Pays a courtesy visit to Ghana

On 27 January, the African Ministers’ Council on Water Secretariat paid a courtesy visit to the Ministry for Sanitation and Water, Ghana. The delegation, led by the Executive Secretary of AMCOW, Dr Rashid Mbaziira, was received by the Minister of Water Resources, Ghana, Honourable Cecilia Abena Dapaah.

A group photograph taken at the office of the Hon Minister of Water Resources, Ghana

During the meeting, the Minister stated that Ghana had made strides in the sector. She highlighted that, by implementing some of its projects between 2018-2021, the Ministry has provided over 40 000 household toilets to help reduce open defecation in the country.

According to the 2021 Population and Housing Census released by the Ghana Statistical Service, the population with improved toilet facilities is about 80.9%. Of this, 25.3% of the populace use exclusive household toilet facilities (basic sanitation), and the remaining 55.6% use shared toilet facilities with multiple households. In addition, the 2021 Population and Housing Census released by the Ghana Statistical Service states that 87.7% of the populace has access to basic water supply services. During the meeting with Dr Rashid Mbaziira, Hon Mrs Cecilia Abena added that Ghana is on course to attain the Sustainable Development Goals Target 6.1.1. come 2030.

Regarding data management and information, the Minister reiterated that reliable and accurate data is critical for decision-making and planning, especially in a situation of limited resources.

She added that Ghana had participated actively during the production of the WASSMO report since 2011. In the last edition, Ghana was cited as one of the best-performing countries in data collection and reporting regarding meeting the WASSMO System’s numerous targets.

Even though developing the WASSMO report has been going on for some time, many countries, including Ghana, still find it difficult to provide data for some of the required indicators. Weaknesses exist in some national data, information management and monitoring systems, and the lack of credible and sufficient reporting on the state of the water resources within the African Continent, including Ghana, which has been the subject of various regional and global stakeholders’ fora.

In Ghana, a lot has been done to establish a robust monitoring system to help track the water and sanitation sector’s progress and to inform decision-making towards accelerated access to clean and safely managed water and sanitation services for all. Ghana will always play a key role in AMCOW. It will support policy revisions and the creation of reverse linkages for Ghana to share her experience and provide support to other Member States, says the Hon Minister.

On the revision of the African Water Vision, she added that Ghana is ready to be part of the countries to champion the commitment of developing a roadmap to formulate the post-2025 Africa Water Vision. The vision should be audacious enough to largely influence the post-2030 Developmental Agenda of the United Nations. The NGOR declaration in Senegal on ending Open defecation found space in the 2030 SDG targets, and the same must be the vision as we formulate the post-2025 Africa Water Vision. The Continent is blessed with substantial water resources, and the time has come to effectively harness these resources to better the lives of people within the Continent.