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Ministry to Restore Degraded River Enyau Catchment Areas

River Enyau, which is one of the main water body’s in the sub-region covers parts of Arua, Terego, Madi Okollo, Maracha, and Koboko districts including Arua City.
A section of Enyau River catchment area that is heavly encroached in Arua City.

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The Ministry of Water and Environment has started restoring the heavily degraded River Enyau catchment areas in the West Nile sub-region.

The intervention follows a report by Segamu 14 Consults Limited, a consultancy firm that indicated that over 50 hectares of wetland in Enyau river catchment areas have been degraded by the local communities living along the river.

According to the report, the degraded areas in the catchment area are in the sub-counties of Omugo, Aiivu, Uriama, Odupi and Katrini in Terego district. Meanwhile, Rigbo and Ewanga sub-counties in Madi Okollo district are equally degraded.

The five-year project named Integrated Water Management and Development Project (IWMDP) which will be implemented in partnership with the affected local governments is funded by the world bank to the tune of over 70 billion shillings.

Engineer Annette Nantongo, the Senior Water Officer at the Ministry of Water and Environment says that the overall objective of the project is to improve the sustainable provision of safe water and sanitation services to the host communities and refugee population in the refugee host districts in West Nile.

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Common human activities which are normally carried out in the catchment areas include, cultivation of the river banks, sand mining, crazing of animals on the river bank, and deforestation among others.

Richard Musota, the Principal Water Officer in the Ministry of Water and Environment says through the intervention, they also seek to address climate change shocks in the catchment areas.

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Among the interventions, the ministry intends to plant 50 km of either side of Enyau buffer zone with trees and grass as well as demarcate 23km of the flood zone of the beacons among others.

Geoffrey Opima, the secretary of production, marketing, and natural resources Terego district, has welcomed the intervention describing it as timely, owing to the fact that local governments are incapacitated with meager resources.

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This is the third intervention by the government in the past six years to restore the degraded Enyau river catchment areas.

In 2018, the National Water and Sewerage Cooperation-NWSC distributed over 1,000 seedlings to communities within the buffer zones of river Enyau, as a measure to save water catchment areas.

In the 2016/2017 financial year, National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) erected pillars to demarcate the River Enyau buffer zone. At least 500 homesteads that had encroached within the catchment areas are yet to be evicted.

River Enyau, which is one of the main water body’s in the sub-region covers parts of Arua, Terego, Madi Okollo, Maracha, and Koboko districts including Arua City.

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