Following the West African regional consultations on major water infrastructure, IUCN recently organised a workshop and training for representatives of civil society of the 5 major watersheds in the region (Niger, Senegal, Gambia, Volta and Mano Rivers).
The workshop was conducted in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso from 17 to 19 January 2011. It followed the activities already undertaken under the Regional Dialogue on large hydraulic infrastructures, including the forums in Nouakchott and Sélingué. Representatives from 15 West African countries participated, along with participants of the facilitating organisation, Eau Vive.
Workshop participants were able to exchange and share findings and recommendations of the previous dialogues. They also received training in advocacy techniques that will help them in raising and negotiating issues in multi-stakeholder settings. Seven themes of recommendations were made for more active and engaged participation in the development of a future Framework Directive on the management of large dams in West Africa by ECOWAS.
A positioning strategy for the participation of the civil society in the regional WRCC workshops has been provided at the end of January. In Ouagadougou, Niamey and Dakar. These meetings will brought together states, river basin organizations and civil society and IUCN, with the aim to present the work of the independent experts’ panel established by WRCC. Panel's recommendations have been presented to the participants and observations have been noted by the experts in order to review the formulation and finalize the document to be approved at a coming final WRCC regional workshop and given to the ECOWAS ministers.
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