BREAKING NEWS: NEWARI Becomes the First African NGO to Record Groundbreaking 'Blue Community' Designation

A prominent Nigerian organization, the Network of Water Rights Initiative (NEWARI) has become one of the first African organizations to achieve the prestigious designation of a Blue Community. This recognition places NEWARI among global leaders committed to promoting the fundamental right to water, as outlined in "The human right to water and sanitation," Resolution A/RES/64/292 of the United Nations.

A Blue Community is a global network of communities and organizations dedicated to upholding the human right to water. To achieve this designation, NEWARI has met four key criteria, 

● NEWARI acknowledges the right to water as a fundamental human right.

● Promotion of Publicly Financed, Owned Water and Wastewater Services: NEWARI advocates for publicly owned water and wastewater services.

● Responsible Water Management: NEWARI emphasizes responsible water management and encourages the use of tap water from public infrastructure whenever possible.

● International Partnerships and Advocacy: NEWARI collaborates with international partners and advocates for the right to water on the global stage.

The Council of Canadians, one of Canada’s leading independent advocacy groups, awarded NEWARI the certificate of recognition on 1st May 2024, acknowledging its commitment to promoting water rights. The certificate is signed by Ms. Maude Barlow, co-founder and honorary chairperson of the Council of Canadians. She has served as a Senior Advisor on Water to the United Nations, is an outspoken advocate and author of more than 20 books on issues including democratic and social rights, trade sovereignty, environmental justice and the right to water and sanitation, and she started the Blue Community movement with the first Blue Communities in Canada.

Amb. Mrs. Amaka Nweke JP, Coordinator of NEWARI, expressed her joy at this global recognition, highlighting NEWARI's previous award as the "2023 WATER WARRIORS WINNERS." She said that by achieving this designation, NEWARI joins a prestigious network of organizations across the globe dedicated to promoting water rights.  Mr. Temple Chukwuemeka Oraeki, Board Chairman of NEWARI, emphasized that NEWARI's mission aligns perfectly with the mandate of the Blue Community, emphasizing water as a human right and a public good. He also stressed the importance of knowledge exchange and collaboration with like-minded organizations and professionals worldwide.

Dr. Ebere Udeh, another director at NEWARI, emphasized that this designation marks not the end, but the beginning of a new phase of commitment and responsibility. She charged the NEWARI team with sustaining the momentum of their impactful work in society, ensuring that the right to water is upheld for all.

The Network of Water Rights Initiative (NEWARI), commonly known as WASH Rights Network, is a registered Nigerian Network of over 23 Grassroots Organizations (with registration number CAC/RN: 190076) that is focused on enhancing access to safe, clean water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services in Nigeria through a human rights and responsibility-based approach. Integral to the core objectives of the Network is the alleviation of water poverty by promoting collaboration, effective partnerships, and synergy amongst WASH-focused organizations in Nigeria. NEWARI is committed to contributing towards the achievement of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG #6) to make clean water and sanitation accessible to all.


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