3rd WASPA International Conference & EXPO 2019Jun 18, 2019 11:11:16
Over at ASPAC, we had delegates present to display various ASPAC Systems and Innovations at the 3rd edition of the WASPA International Conference & Expo which kicked off on Wednesday, May 8th, 2019 at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) Nairobi, Kenya.
This year's conference organized by the Water Services Providers Association (WASPA) had in attendance numerous players in the water sector (including over 500 delegates from all around the world who work in various sectors including the private sector, government agencies, water utilities, water associations, research institutions, NGOs, consultants, finance institutions and more come together to engage in discussions towards unlocking their potential and contribute meaningfully towards making the world water secure.
Discussions that witnessed 20 panel-led lectures spanning across 3 days from 8th - 10th May, 2019.
The opening ceremony witnessed the presence of several top dignitaries including Mr. Joseph Irungu (Principal Secretary, Ministry of Water & Sanitation), Ms. Winnie Guchu (Chief Administrative Secretary), Mr. Antony Ambugo (CEO WASPA) Engr. Daniel Nganga (Chairman WASPA), and the Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya, Dr William Ruto amongst many others.
A common theme amongst the panelists was the call for all water service providers to contribute towards making the world, and specifically Kenya, water secure by investing in infrastructural developments, and implementation of strategical plans. Above all, for WASPA to continue playing their role in the creation of an enabling environment for these providers to carry out their mandate with ease.
When quizzed about the Ministry's efforts to ensure that Kenya meets 100% Sanitation coverage, the Chief Administrative Sec. - Ms. Winnie Guchu - acknowledged the presence of huge amounts of waste materials not being taken care of with Kenya currently at a 29% Sanitation coverage countrywide (Urban-31%, Rural-28%).
Furthermore, she confirmed the Ministry's target to match sanitation and population growth, building dams, achieving proper sewage coverage in 17 towns while also looking deeply into the matter of policy implementation as well as other long-term solutions.
"To achieve 100% water coverage (in Kenya) by 2030, the country needs to invest close to 100 billion KES per year. Programmes will include access to water"
- H.E. Dr. William S. Ruto. (Deputy President - Republic of Kenya)
For ASPAC, represented by our Process Engineer - Mr. Bernard Kamp, we were thrilled to present to the delegates our Electro-chlorination system which offers a very safe and cost-effective alternative to the disinfection of water by production of in-house chlorine. This presentation discussed under the Theme: Innovations & Technology afforded us the chance to educate guests on our latest innovative system which functions with water, salt and electricity as its key ingredients.
The system is perfectly complemented by our Intelligent Monitoring System - ASPAC Live - which is a state-of-the-art sensing technology that allows users to monitor all their data in one place. This offers lot of benefits that include the reduced costs in manpower and data collection.
Before the official Closing Ceremony on May 10th, key note addresses were given by Dr. Rose Gathii (Lecturer, KCA University) & Ida Githu (Adviser, EED Advisory) who gave the audience something to think about with climate change and its evident effect in Kenya. They put forward a number of considerations for more effective mitigation approaches and water service delivery.
After the day's breakout sessions, delegates gathered at the Tsavo Ballroom where Engr. Daniel Nganga (Chairman WASPA) reeled out the outcomes of the WASPA Conference over the past days. They included the fact that;
- there is need to use smart technology for the purpose of reducing Non-Revenue Water (NRW)
- climate change is evidently with us and more needs to be done to address the challenge
- there is huge financing gap & over-reliance on traditional sources of financing which remain inadequate
- reinvestment of incomes generated by Water Service Providers is paramount
- there is more opportunities for continued capacity training & building, among others.
The WASPA and delegates then agreed on a number of resolutions that arose from the 3-day conference. They include
- the need for all Water & Sanitation Sector players to adopt modern technology
- all institutions mandated with environmental conservation & management must up efforts to increase forest cover
The conference came to an official end after the Closing Remarks given by the Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB) Chairman in which he expressed confidence that issues bordering on WASH have been exhaustively discussed and options explored to enable the conference come up with actionable plans that would contribute to the improvement of WASH services in participating countries.
He also hoped that, in the wake of climate change and environmental degradation, due priority would be given to restoration & conservation of water resources.
At the end of it all, we spoke with the Chairman of WASPA who expressed delight which included the quality of presentations, delegates' commitments amongst other factors that contributed to the Conference's success.