Ato Yewendwesen Mengistu
Director General of Abay Basin Authority
The Abay River Basin Authority is one of the 12 river basins in Ethiopia. The river authority was set up as a high level body that would give focused attention to fulfilling our sacred and serious duty to restore the pristine glory of the Abay Basin and conserve its riches for the next generations. It was established to be the technical arm and secretariat of the basin high council by proclamations 534/99 and full functional since 2011.
It is responsible for undertaking and facilitating the implementation of an integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) in the basin. In order to facilitate its Tasks ABA can also open/establish branch offices/sub basin organizations (SBOs) under its jurisdiction. Tana-Beles Sub-basin organizations are currently working SBOs which can assist the allocation of water efficiently across sectors and in developing and managing the water resources of the sub basin in a holistic way in a river basin frame work . The GOE also hopes to translate the rich natural resources, social and environmental endowment of the Tana and Beles sub –Basin in to a growth zone that lifts the populations out of poverty and contributes to overall economic growth in the country.
Addressing the problems of our rivers is an important part of addressing the problems of water sector, actually there are treats /issues of our water sector such as: conflicts, in resources use, serious land degradation, increasing demand for energy, Inadequate knowledge base, absence base of regularity frame work for the protection of the resources sedimentation, pollution of water from communities, factories and chemical fertilize, droughts and floods etc. To alleviate the problems in sustainable way we can now take the necessary steps. Apart from improving efficiency our efficiency in protecting and managing water our resources to sustain our ground and surface water storage and supply by increasing forest cover , especially in river basin areas it will also help us to control flooding , one of the most devastating effects of the improper management of our water resources.
For the success of our goal all concerned stakeholders from Hydropower, Agriculture, fishery, Navigations, tourism, and others, should work together to make the success of this important national Endeavour. I think I can safely speak for every one the road of cooperation in the right track to our target. This is what proper management and sustainable development of our resources allow us to do. It also allows us to ensure a good harvest for our framers, and enough power for our businesses and homes. It also allows us to maintain the beauty of and ensure the sustainability of our rivers; It allows us to preserve the quality of our air, water and ecological habitants. The important thing is that of us does our part for integrated water resource management.
Finally, I can say we must build a water policy and plan that is inclusive of all interests - urban, agriculture, recreational, and environmental – and where all parties recognize that the other has an equal stake in keeping the river healthy. If we succeed in this – and I’m confident that we can –we will find a way to transform the challenges of today in to opportunities for tomorrow.
Ato Yewendwesen Mengistu
Director General Of Abay Basin Authority