On 23 September, the African Union - United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) commissioned a water borehole that is expected to benefit the Mission and the surrounding community in El Fasher, North Darfur, by providing approximately 3,600 litres of potable water per hour.
The Mission's Ethiopian Engineering Unit drilled the 97 meter borehole as part of the Mission's ongoing efforts to address the scarcity of water in the region. One of the goals of the new borehole programme, in addition to facilitating water access for Darfuris, is for the Mission to be more self-sufficient with its water supply.
The 2011 International Water Conference focused on addressing water scarcity in Darfur and how to determine the equitable use and management of this limited resource to help build peace in the region. As part of the strategy that emerged from the Conference, UNAMID has been partnering with UN agencies, international organisations and Sudanese institutions in mobilizing resources needed to implement an integrated water resource programme.
"The commissioning of this borehole is a significant event in many ways," said Mr. Mohamed B. Yonis, UNAMID's Deputy Joint Special Representative. It will add to our efforts to provide water to the surrounding local community and to UNAMID personnel and it demonstrates the Mission's capacity and intention to replicate these efforts to provide this rare but important commodity to all sectors."
The Ethiopian Engineering Unit is expected to soon start drilling another borehole, which will be used by El Fasher University.