Mali’s Experience in Planning for the SDG related to the WASH Sector

By Mr. Yaya Boubacar, National Director, Energy and Water Ministry

28 Aug, 2017 in News Categories

maliMr. Yaya Boubacar, speaking at the 2017 HLM

Mali’s overall vision is to achieve universal access to WASH services by 2030. This vision is formulated in the national policy and strategy documents which are currently being reviewed. The country plans to accelerate access to drinking water to 2% per year, and reach the ODF status for an additional population of 1 million per year.

Moreover, Mali plans to scale up CLTS. Two key steps in the planning for the WASH-related SDGs are: a consultation to evaluate MDG performance and translate SDGs into the national plans; and, the development of management plans for water safety. A workshop was held on 3 August 2017 to present the plans and results. Besides technical bodies (Direction Nationale de l'Hydraulique, Direction Nationale chargée de l'Assainissement), this workshop attracted a strong participation from the civil society organisations.

Three presentations were made during the workshop: an introduction to SWA, Mali’s ‘country overview’ submitted for the SWA’s April 2017 HLM, and a summary of Mali’s participation in the HLMs. Recommendations were then made. This will be followed by a roadmapping exercise. In parallel, the “Social Emergencies Programme 2017 – 2020” will also be implemented. 

The sector stakeholders, including development partners like Unicef and WaterAid, participated in a collaborative process to delineate national commitments to address identified challenges. These consultations also discussed the main conceptual frameworks suggested by the SWA for sector analysis: the Building Blocks and the Collaborative Behaviours.

The planning is built on a solid evidence base, and Mali has used several data tools, notably EMOP 2015, GLAAS 2015, TrackFin 2016 and the 2016 PROSEA review. Moreover, data were also taken from annual reports of the different Technical Units of the Energy and Water Ministry.

The main bottlenecks in the sector planning are:

  • Insufficient financial resources, notably those coming from the government
  • Low capacities, notably at decentralized levels
  • Non-integration of approaches such as CLTS, WASH-marketing and equity-inclusion in sector policies
  • Problems in monitoring and evaluation
  • Lack of operationalization of sector consultation and coordination frameworks

Mali has identified several priority actions in the planning and implementation of the SDG vision for the sector. First and foremost, to identify and better direct the requisite financial resources (both public and private) for policy priorities such as urban sanitation, rural WASH services and coverage of vulnerable groups.

Furthermore, to improve revenue collection and guarantee sufficient funding to cover operational and maintenance expenditure to ensure sustainability.

Secondly, to strengthen the sector in two ways: joint annual reviews to improve management, coordination and harmonization of sector-related data; and the strengthening of human resources through recruitment and on-job skill-building.

Thirdly, to spread awareness about strategies for ODF in zones most affected by it: rural areas.

Once the ODF status is achieved, especially in poor and vulnerable populations, to intensify the monitoring of these populations to help maintain the status and, thereafter, to move up the scale of sanitation services. Finally, as concerns sector governance in urban areas, to strengthen regulatory oversight in water supply and attain new standards of safely managed services through quality improvements.

Mr. Boubacar's interview during the HLM