Idrica Water Security Day Africa

Idrica Water Security Day Africa

As a strategic resource for a country, water is essential for the well-being of the population. Water security is a growing concern in Africa, and the current situation is an additional challenge for the area.

In this online dialogue, renowned speakers discussed the situation in the area, possible solutions to current problems and the role that technology can play.

The meeting, moderated by the African journalist Daniel Makokera, took place on June 23rd 2020, with the participation of the following leaders:

  • Dr. Greg Mills, Director of The Brenthurst Foundation and international specialist in African conflicts.
  • Sylvain Usher, Executive Director of the African Water Association (AfWA).
  • Prof. Hamanth Kasan, Chairman of the African Water Association Program Committee.
  • Chema Nebot, Head of Business Development at Idrica and Water Technology Expert.

Expert Talks

According to Greg Mills, water is an essential part of any infrastructure requirement. However, Africa has not invested efficiently in it and current infrastructures do not meet the needs of the population.

Chema Nebot argues that technology is the best driver for efficiency in water utilities, and should be focused on increasing ROI in companies.

 In their interviews with Daniel Makokera, both experts reflect on the following aspects:

  • How can utilities benefit from innovation?
  • What are the challenges for digital transformation in Africa?
  • How can African conflicts be solved?
  • Are macrotrends interacting with the coronavirus crisis?
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Idrica Water Security Day: Materials

What are the challenges faced by Africa in the post-covid scenario? Check the speakers’ presentations of the event that has brought together the world’s leading experts on water security.

  • «Water security and Africa», Dr. Greg Mills.
  • «The related effects on water and sanitation operators in Africa», Sylvian Usher.
  • «Water Security for Africa», Prof. Hamanth Kasan.
  • «Water security and technology in a crisis context», Chema Nebot.

You ask the questions

How can water security be achieved in Africa? Can a poor public service lead to social turmoil? Is Africa ready for digital transformation? The specialists answered the participants’ questions during the event.

Watch the video

During Idrica Water Security Day Africa, four leading water experts share their view on how to fight post-pandemic risks.

Watch the video to discover what global thought leaders think about this growing concern.

About the speakers

Dr. Greg Mills

  • Director of The Brenthurst Foundation, based in Johannesburg. He was educated at the Universities of Cape Town (BA and BA Hons) and Lancaster (MA and PhD), he taught at the Universities of Western Cape and Cape Town. He was Director of Studies at the South African Institute of International Affairs and the SAIIA.
  • He has directed numerous reform projects in African presidencies (Ghana, Lagos State, Mozambique, SE Nigeria, Kenya, Lesotho, Somaliland and SA), and sat on the Danish Africa Commission and the African Development Bank’s high-level panel on fragile states.
  • Dr. Mills has served four deployments to Afghanistan with the British Army as the adviser to the commander.
  • In 2008 he became a Strategy Advisor to the President of Rwanda. He has directed the Secretariat of the Presidential International Advisory Board in Mozambique and the Presidential Economic Advisory Commission of Malawi.
  • In 2006, he was the head of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Prism strategic analysis group, both in Kandahar and Kabul.
  • He has published on international affairs, development and security, and is a regular columnist for South African and international newspapers. He is the author of the books “Why Africa is Poor – and what Africans can do about it” (2010), “Why States Recover” (2014) and, together with Jeffrey Herbst (President of the Newseum, Washington DC), “Africa’s Third Liberation” (2012) and “How South Africa works – and must improve” (2015).
  • Based on his peacebuilding experiences, he edited with General Sir David Richards, “Victory Among People: Lessons from Countering Insurgencies and Establishing Fragile States” (2011), and in 2013 he published “Somalia–Fixing Africa’s Most Failed State” with Peter Pham and Dr. David Kilcullen.
  • He has been a visiting fellow at the Centre for African Studies at the University of Cambridge and a senior visiting researcher at the Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore. In 2013 he was appointed to the AFDB’s High Level Panel on Fragile States. He is on the visiting faculty of the NATO Defense College, the Royal College of Defense Studies in London and the SA National Defense College.
  • In 2015 he completed the study “A Great Perhaps? Colombia: Conflict and Convergence” on the post-conflict governance experience with Dr. Kilcullen, Dr. David Spencer and General Dickie Davis.
  • In 2017, together with Dr. Herbst, General Davis and Olusegun Obasanjo, President of the Foundation, he published “Making Africa Work: A Handbook for Economic Success”.
  • In 2018 he completed a second stint as a visiting fellow at Cambridge University, writing a book on African democracy: “Democracy Works (2019)”. “The Asian Aspiration: Why and How Africa Should Emulate Asia” has followed in 2020.
  • See profile

Sylvain Usher

  • Electrical Engineer (University of Quebec, Canada). In 1999 he joined the National Water Company and entered the African Water Association (AfWA) as Deputy Secretary General. Since then he has developed his international career as a water specialist, organizing capacity building programs for African water utilities.
  • Since 2004 Mr. Usher is leading the Institution as the Executive Director of the African Water Association. He developed several studies for institutions such as the EU, the African Development Bank and the World Bank, and facilitates workshops and sessions during international conferences.
  • He has facilitated dialogues with the African Development Bank on scaling up Water and Sanitation services, with the participation of experts and water utilities’ CEOs. He developed a World Bank study on African rapidly growing urbanization, and the challenges faced by water and sanitation utilities.
  • Member of international water institutions and co-author of the African Water Association book on water and sanitation issues in the African continent “ L’Afrique et L’Eau” (2014).
  • See profile

Prof. Hamanth Kasan

  • Over 30 years of experience in the water and sanitation sectors, locally, continentally and globally. His qualifications include a PhD in Applied Microbiology, Graduate Diploma in Water and Environmental Engineering and a Postgraduate Diploma in Company Direction. He is also a certified Neuro-semantic coach.
  • Specialist and opinion leader in multi-disciplinary education, science, engineering, management, leadership, corporate governance and coaching.
  • Prof. Kasan has a widespread valuable experience as an academic, practitioner and director. He has presented innovative approaches to the Sustainable Development Goals in different forums around the world.
  • He has held various positions, such as VP IWA, Chairman of IWA (South Africa and ESAR International), Advisory Member of Program Committee of the Singapore International Water Week and Board Chairperson of Water Research Commission in South Africa. He has also been an advisor to water ministers in South Africa.
  • International Task team member for formulating new ISO 30500:2018 standard for innovative non-sewage sanitation, led by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • He successfully led the merger between IWSA: Eastern and Southern African Region (ESAR) and the African Water Association (AfWA).
  • Vice President of AfWA. Board member of IWA and AfWA, and Chairman of the AfWA Program Committee focused on acquisition of donor funds for water and sanitation development projects in Africa. Fellow of IWA and the Water Institute of Southern Africa (WISA) and member of the International Advisory Group UN Habitat (GWOPA program).
  • General Manager of Scientific Services and Chairperson of the Task Group at Rand Water, which serves drinking water to 16M people.
  • Previously Extraordinary Professor at University of Pretoria South Africa, he is currently Honorary Professor at the Institute for Water and Wastewater Research (Durban University of Technology, South Africa). Member of South African Local Government Association (SALGA), Scientific Forum.
  • He has published “The Gift”, on how to empower young water professionals, and has received local, continental and global awards for leadership in the water sector.
  • See profile

Chema Nebot

  • Telecommunications Engineer by the Polytechnic University of Valencia (Spain), he has a Master’s degree in the specialty of radio communications from the École Supérieure d’Electricité (SUPELEC) in Paris.
  • He has always been involved in the technology sector, as head of business development for different telecom multinational companies such as EXFO, Astellia or Ingenia Telecom.
  • He currently holds the position of Head of Business Development at Idrica, leading the divisions of sales, marketing, tenders and documentation.

Moderator: Daniel Makokera

  • Mr. Makokera is a well-known face across Africa and has worked as journalist, television anchor, producer and conference presenter for over 20 years.
  • Throughout his career as presenter and anchor, he has travelled widely across the continent and held exclusive interviews with some of Africa’s most important leaders, like Kofi Annan, Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki or Muammar Gaddafi.
  • Guests on his shows have also included numerous top officials of the African Union, as well as other government ministers, top business leaders and Africa experts from across the globe.
  • Over the years he has moderated a large number of high-level discussions for various organisations and governments related to politics and diplomacy.
  • Daniel worked for the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) for 7 years, becoming the main presenter of its international channel SABC Africa.
  • He started Pamuzinda in 2003 with the TV programme series “Eye on Africa with Daniel” (DSTV channel Africa Magic).
  • He trained as a journalist, and holds a diploma in both electronic and print media. He also holds a BA in international studies and diplomacy. He was born in Zimbabwe and is a South African citizen.
  • See profile

Join the next Idrica Water Security Series

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