Alternative World Water Forum 2022
Dakar, Senegal 22nd March – 25th March 2021
The World Water Forum and the Alternative
From March 22-27, Senegal will host the 9th World Water Forum. This meeting takes place every three years and this will be the first time it is held in Africa since the 1997 inaugural meeting in Morocco. The World Water Forum is an expensive mega-event convened by the World Water Council, a corporate-driven multi-stakeholder body that brings banks, transnational water companies, academics and public agencies together to mainly promote private sector solutions to water governance, management and delivery.
This is why for more than two decades, these forums have been opposed by the global water justice movement—a growing network of water and environmental justice organizations, social movements, small scale farmers, trade unions and human rights advocates around the world. The organizers of the Forum Alternatif Mondial de l’Eau (FAME) firmly believe that water is life and sacred. That it is not a market commodity but part of our global commons to be shared equitably and protected for future generations.
Beyond protesting the water merchants, profiteers and enablers gathering at the World Water Forum, the FAME is about showcasing alternatives, learning together, planning together, and finding new ways to live together.
What we will be doing in Dakar
The 2022 people’s Alternative World Water Forum in Dakar offers the opportunity to learn, to mobilize and to organize and unite human right to water struggles in Africa with other anti privatisation struggles across the globe. In Dakar, and for participants who will join virtually from around the world, water activists will continue challenging and resisting water privatisation. Activists gathering in Dakar recognise that the struggle for water is an intersectional, internationalist struggle that needs a solid anti-capitalist, people-centered and feminist orientation. Activists will join hands and voices with communities in Senegal, Africa and across the world to strengthen the water justice network and movement (see the FAME programme for more).
In Dakar we will:
- Call on governments and democratically elected representatives to stop using the neoliberal cost-recovery market rate model for water services and to break ties with companies seeking to make profits out of water and to put water under democratic systems and institutions.
- Join voices to protest and call for an end to the deliberate and cruel actions of building financial barriers to deny low-income households and communities safe drinking water through use of water prepaid meters and other so called electronic payment devices.
- Call for transparency, accountability and greater equity in the allocations and utilisation of tax and donor funding in the water sector.
- Expose the inaction of governments which continues to abet the pillage by transnational companies of development resources of African and other developing nations
- Stand in solidarity with water sector workers against poor investment choices and corruption in the water sector that threatens jobs and people’s access to safe water.
- Support the creation of an Africa Water Justice Network to coordinate demand for human rights to water actions on the continent, beyond the forum.
- Consider legal actions from local to international levels to protect and actualise the inalienable human right to water.
- Call for a stop to the pollution of water from small streams in neighbourhoods to big rivers and oceans including calls for economic boycott of institutions whose fortunes are linked to pollution. etc.
The Objective of the Alternative Water Forum
The forum will continue to create spaces for awareness, information and knowledge preservation on; where the water we use and we need comes from, who owns it, who sells it, what is at stake, and how to stand to protect it.
The Future We Seek
Mobilising, organising, learning and working together, we seek to:
- Assert people’s needs and power over water companies and other industries impacting people’s ability to sustain themselves.
- Mobilise in greater numbers to encourage more people to step and join the struggle to wrestle control and influence of water from international bureaucrats and businessmen.
- Get governments to commit to and implement the human rights to water is a human right to ensure universal access to clean water to people, and protecting water as a commons, not a commodity.
- Attain a future where international trade rules have a limit on what can be put on markets to without doubt protect common public goods such as water and air which are non-renewable, finite and collective human needs are not placed on sale.
- See communities fully in charge and have the capacity to manage their water systems, and democratically make decisions about access and maintanance. Thatnations, and communities take back ownership of their water systems and manage them.
Join us, as we challenge Corporate Water Grabbing and Defend the Human Right to Water
The COVID-19 public health pandemic’s disastrous impact on economies and lives have highlighted how important it is for people to contest and reclaim control over water resources. Water as has been seen in the pandemic is a key determinant of safety and preservation of lives. Water and decisions around can therefore not be left in the hands of a few. The argument against water privatisation and for democratic control and universal access has never been more relevant than now. Join us in Senegal as we challenge the World Bank, the World Water Council and the World Water Forum and to discuss alternative and the way forward at the people’s Alternative World Water Forum.
We invite you to use this link to indicate your interest in attending FAME, propose sessions, side events as well inform us of related activities you or your organisation will be implementing in your part of the world. We encourage those who can afford to travel and join us in Senegal and those who wish to participate virtually to all register, using this link. See the FAME program here.