Tanzania: Govt Calls for Improvement in Data Collection Technology

THE government has underscored the need for improvement in data collection technology from the cloud that compliments ground observation in order to improve knowledge base, which is the basis for making good decision.

Opening the Nile Basin data and analytical services needs assessment and awareness raising workshop, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Water, Eng Anthony Sanga said the evolving challenges such as climate change and complex water resources management require innovative approaches and expansion of knowledge and understanding of the global resources to address those challenges.

"The need for relevant decisions in many spheres of life such as water and related natural resources management is growing immensely and requires credible data. It is high time, therefore, to make use of the technology in water resources management and development" insisted Eng Sanga

He said data and analytics services provide an opportunity to enhance the national capacity to tap on the available data resources online in order to improve our knowledge base.

The Permanent Secretary said the project on expanding Nile Basin data and analytic services for climate-resilient water resources management in the Nile Basin through innovative information services for climate-resilient investment planning is a perfect opportunity and scale up the country's capacities.

With the changing climate due to global warming, he said, it is more complicated with many uncertainties, though despite that situation, there is need to understand its complexity and manage the same.

He further said that the demanding task requires full understanding of the earth system through interpreting long time data of good quality.

"Unfortunately, globally, the data gap is huge. As a result, some decisions are less science-based as they are not supported with credible and authentic data. I am grateful that this workshop is aiming to bridge the gap. This is a good initiative that requires all supports" he underlined.

Eng Sanga said water resources management and development involves multiple actors, stakeholders and sectors whose actions affect the resource.

Thus, with the shrinking of water sources, floods and droughts that cost life and damages properties, water allocation to competing uses is complex and challenging, and water security is full of uncertainties.

"The situation is more complicated when it involves many countries in transboundary waters. In this situation, credible data is the bottom-line to present facts and make things understandable and support informed decisions that take social, environmental, economic and political aspects of water into consideration," he said.

He said that these serious ambitions and plans require serious investment, therefore water resources data is key in implementing these global, regional and national plans.

He directed the country's Basin Water Boards that are participating in the workshop to make arrangements to create awareness and share the knowledge and skills to the rest of the Basins so that they all can move together.

Eng Sanga said the government commitment with the support from and collaboration with the Nile Basin will continue monitoring diverse river basin processes, which are critically important for an effective management of water and related natural resources.

"Tanzania will continue enhancing her water resources database for supporting informed decision making. Ground observed data in Tanzania will be complimented by those from global sources including cloud and satellite-based data to support water resources management," he said.

He said leaders need knowledge to make informed, wise and science-based decisions, thus they need information to acquire that knowledge and data to get information.

Earlier, Executive Director of the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI), Sylvester Matemu said the country should use the World Bank five years' financial support to effectively realise the project objectives and improve knowledge.

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