The Government of Senegal is the convener and organizer of the AfricaSan 4 holding in Dakar, Senegal from May 25 - 27 2015. AMCOW and the AfricaSan International Task Force will provide technical support to the Government of Senegal in the organization of the AfricaSan 4. The conference is expected to attract about 40 Ministers responsible for sanitation from across Africa, along with about 1000 participants drawn from government agencies, civil society, donors and development banks, multilaterals, research organizations and the private sector.
AfricaSan 4 continues the AfricaSan tradition, building on approaches that have worked. It is essentially a political meeting seeking to raise the priority of sanitation amongst the new generation of san leaders. The timing is AfricaSan 4 is fortuitous both as the last AfricaSan meeting to assess progress against the MDGs; as well as being well-positioned to build momentum on sanitation and hygiene for the SDGs.
The theme of AfricaSan 4 “Making Sanitation for All a Reality in Africa” responds to the visionary ideals of a new generation of Africa’s sanitation ministers. It sets the bar high so that the highly successful eThekwini commitment process can consider a new set of targets and indicators to help accelerate progress towards universal coverage.
The AfricaSan 4 theme not only concerns itself with sanitation access. It seeks to address the full sanitation value chain (containment, emptying, transport, treatment, disposal and reuse). Moreover it also focuses on a full sanitation ladder of access, including making Africa open-defecation free. By sanitation is also implied hygiene: AfricaSan 4 will host a specific discussion on how to accelerate good hygiene behaviour change.
AfricaSan 4 has also had a strong regional and country process leading up to the Dakar meeting. Led by the chair of AMCOW’s AfricaSan Task Force Subcommittee, WSP, countries have engaged in three substantial sub-regional meetings in which countries have been involved in a peer-to-peer exchange on progress and sector bottlenecks in country action plans. Progress on country action plans and against the eThekwini commitments have been mapped and the results will be presented at AfricaSan 4. A feature of this preparatory process was the conscious effort to align the different sanitation sector monitoring processes in Africa.
The overall objective of AfricaSan 4 is to assist African countries achieve universal access to improved sanitation and adoption of good hygiene behaviours, to improve service management across the whole value chain, eliminate open defecation and help all Africans up the sanitation ladder.
The main output from AfricaSan 4 will be a new ministerial statement with new trackable continent-wide commitments on key steps to making sanitation for all a reality in Africa.