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Okavango facts

The number of people in SADC who lack safe drinking water is 60 million.

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The Commission

Composition and responsibilities of the Commission and its members is described in The Organizational Structure for the Permanent Okavango River Basin Water Commission (OKACOM), 2006.

OKACOM members meet at Alte Brucke in Swakopmund, Namibia in May 2011.The Commission is made up of three representatives from each riparian country. Technical support and advice is provided by the Okavango Basin Steering Committee which is made up of three representatives from each country, and by issue-based task forces. A permanent Secretariat, established in 2008, supports the day to day work of the Commission.

 

 

 

Functions of the Commission

Functions of OKACOM are:

a) to identify and establish standards for the conservation, development and use of the water resources of the Basin;

b) to promote, develop and implement programmes, projects, strategies and action plans for the conservation, environmental management, development and use of water resources of common interest in the Basin;

c) to develop technical, economic, financial and legal background documents required for the preparation of a Master Plan for the integrated conservation, development and use of the basin water resources;

d) to develop agreements on the equitable sharing of the water resources of the Basin;

e) to promote the construction and operation of hydraulic infrastructures of common interest to the Contracting Parties;

f) to promote and develop the required actions to reduce any adverse environmental impact on the Basin;

g) to promote, develop and implement projects of common interest to the Contracting Parties, on matters relating to conservation, development and use of water resources of the Basin;

h) to establish short, medium and long term programmes of common interest to meet the needs of the people of the Basin;

i) to develop awareness and environmental education programmes for the people of the Basin;

j) to ensure the participation of the people of the States of the River Basin in the implementation of projects in the Basin;

k) to safeguard the rights of the people of the Basin to benefit from water resources, and to respect their habits and customs;

l) to safeguard the rational and sustainable use of water resources by the Contracting Parties;

m) to prevent and resolve any conflicts arising from the use of the water resources of the Basin;

n) to establish coordination mechanisms between Contracting Parties, on matters concerning the development and the use of the water resources of the Basin;

o) to collect and disseminate information of common interest on the use and development of the Basin;

p) to consider any claims and complaints arising from the implementation of conservation, use and development of the water resources of common interest of the Basin;

q) to provide recommendations of a general character or of specific application concerning concrete cases or fundamental aspects of conservation, use and development of the water resources of common interest in the Basin;

r) to make an application for any protective measures or institute any form of legal proceedings to protect the water resources of the Basin;

s) to ensure the execution of agreements and conventions concluded on the matter of use of water resources of the Basin;

t) to address any other matter of common interest within the Basin; and

u) to develop any other activities emanating from the Contracting Parties and concerning the water resources of the Basin.

 

Responsibilities of the Commission

Responsibilities of the Commission are:

a) to define and approve the guidelines to achieve the main objectives of OKACOM;

b) to approve annual and multi-annual work plans, financial plans and budgets thereof;

c) to approve accountability mechanisms and documentation;

d) to manage and approve OKACOM programmes and projects, the terms of reference for the development and implementation of the projects and programmes and the respective Implementation Progress Reports;

e) to submit technical, economic, financial and legal information required for the preparation of the Master Plan for the integrated use of water resources of the Basin, for consideration and approval by the Contracting Parties;

f) to submit, for consideration and approval by the Contracting Parties, the Agreement on Shared Water Resources of the Basin;

g) to define terms and conditions for the prevention and resolution of conflicts related to the use of water resources of common interest in the Basin;

h) to approve the rules of procedures of OKACOM internal bodies;

i) to appoint and dismiss members of the OKACOM internal bodies and project managers;

j) to adopt the terms of reference for experts and consultants to be recruited within the scope of OKACOM and as required for project implementation;

k) to approve experts and consultant contracts within the scope of OKACOM and as required for project implementation;

l) to approve the technical and administrative structure of OKACOM and rules of procedure thereof;

m) to approve staff rules and regulations;

n) to establish ad hoc working groups or specific temporary or permanent committees;

o) to approve work reports from experts and consultants;

p) to propose to the Contracting Parties the acquisition or disposal, on any ground whatsoever, of fixed assets, of income-generating assets or other property of historical or artistic value;

q) to deliberate on the implementation of projects and related matters;

r) to decide on any amendment or revision of agreements or conventions pertaining or applicable to the Basin;

s) to provide overall guidance in the governance of the internal organs of OKACOM; and

t) to decide on any matter submitted by any OKACOM body or any matter.

OKACOM people - The Commissioners

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