Samuda nudges UN member states to do more to deal with water crisis
Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Matthew Samuda (foreground) commissioning a 50,000-gallon water storage tank in York Town, Clarendon, recently. Sharing the moment are (from left) National Water Commission (NWC) Regional Manager - St Catherine and Clarendon — Garwaine Johnson; NWC Vice-President for Operations Kevin Kerr and councillor, York Town Division, Uphel Purcell.

JAMAICA has joined 68 other members of the Group of Friends of Children and the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) in urging United Nations member states to use the occasion of the UN 2023 Water Conference to act now to achieve SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation) and ensure a better future for every child.

Addressing the conference which was being held under the theme 'Water For Sustainable Development 2018-2028', in New York on Thursday, Jamaica's minister with responsibility for water, Matthew Samuda underscored that human health and dignity are the foundations for every society and require access to clean drinking water and sanitation.

"Access to safe drinking water and sanitation is not a privilege but a basic human right enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child [which], as governments, it is our duty to uphold," said Samuda who is also the co-chair of the Group of Friends of Children and the SDGs.

Samuda told the conference that the vision of the Jamaican Government for the management of the island's water resources is guided by 'Vision 2030 Jamaica', and the National Development Plan.

"We are further guided by the National Water Sector Policy and Implementation Plan, of 2019. The policy outlines in detail the measures that are being implemented by the Government to manage and protect the island's water resources to ensure universal access to potable water and adequate sanitation by 2030," said Samuda.

"Additionally, the goal of the policy is to ensure that Jamaica's water resources are effectively managed to provide for our nation's social, economic, and environmental well-being, now and in the future," Samuda added.

He noted that the present water crisis facing many countries is exacerbated by the climate crisis now facing the world.

"Jamaica is calling on all developed countries to honour their commitments made under the Paris Agreement, and subsequently.

"Even if honoured, there is an urgent need for significant increases in funding for adaption. It is Jamaica's belief that much of this should be directed toward water resilience. We have repeatedly called for the process of accessing finance to be simplified and harmonised across funding agencies," said Samuda.

He added: "The climate crisis which is driving the water crisis will not abate because we want it to. It will abate because we make the tough political decisions and appropriate investments in adaptation and water resilience".

Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at


  1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper; email addresses will not be published.
  2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.
  3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.
  4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.
  5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed:
  6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email:
  7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

Which long-term investment option is more attractive to you at the moment?