On the sidelines of the World Water Forum scheduled for next March in Dakar, social movements also plan to hold the Alternative World Water Forum (FAME). This was announced by the coordinator of the social forum in Senegal, Mamadou Mignane Diouf. According to him, they will offer an alternative space open to everyone but which at the same time allows to discuss how water is managed.
“The World Water Forum was launched as a space for discussion, a meeting between public and private decision-makers, civil society actors, communicators and consumers. But after a few years, it became more and more a too commercial space which no longer satisfies human rights defenders and water being a right. This is why alongside the official water forum which started in 2003, all editions, there is the alternative forum which brings together civil society, unions, consumer movements and which at the same time allows them to discuss alternatives. When a multinational says I want to sell water, the alternative forum says water is not for sale, it must be made available at a price and at a social cost that is bearable and reasonable.
“We offer an alternative space open to everyone but which at the same time allows to discuss how water is managed. Water governance should not be commercial, ”he said.
He stresses that the World Water Forum will not be accessible to all. It would even seem already that the cost of the booths in the world water forum in Dakar could be in the millions. Do you think that an association of women, consumers, young people can have a stand that costs 100 million to come and exhibit?
He spoke at a workshop organized by the Confederation of Autonomous Trade Unions (CSA) as part of the celebration of water week around the world. A meeting during which all social movements, civil society, actors working in the water sector are used to discussing, exchanging and raising the issue of water during this water week. which is increasingly becoming a commodity.
For the coordinator of the Autonomous Union of Water Workers of Senegal (SATES) Elimane Diouf, also secretary general of the CSA, the workshop aims to project itself in relation to the world water forum scheduled for March. It was a question of making a plea on water management with a look at what has been done and the perspectives, in particular on the challenges and experience of water privatization in Senegal.