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SADC-GMI appoints director

The SADC Groundwater Management Institute is to appoint Mr James Sauramba, a Zimbabwean national, as its Director.

Boasting a unique combination of academic and professional qualifications, Mr Sauramba has a cumulative 28 years working experience in Zimbabwe, Tanzania, South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique, Malawi and Ireland occupying positions of demanding responsibilities, including:

    • Programme Coordinator for COMESA on the DFID-funded Mozambique Regional Gateway Programme which involved Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia and to a lesser extent South Africa, DRC and Angola;
    • Senior Water and Sanitation Project Manager/Engineer for GIZ Zimbabwe with responsibility for the programme operations in the City of Bulawayo; and
  • Chief Adviser for IP Consult (Germany) on the GIZ funded Malawi-German Programme for Promotion of Democratic Decentralisation.

Most recently, Mr Sauramba was based in Nampula, Mozambique, as the Senior Urban Climate Change Adviser focusing on Solid Waste Management for COWI A/S.

Here he led the urban climate change resilience component implementing prudent solid waste management strategies in the 26 municipalities participating on the Municipal Development Programme funded by the governments of Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland and Ireland and hosted by the Mozambican Ministry of State Administration.

This work experience, plus that gained during his early career, has allowed Mr Sauramba to demonstrate leadership of complex multi-disciplinary and multi-racial teams in multi-country settings, a quality that will prove invaluable in his position as Director of the SADC Groundwater Management Institute.

He holds a Civil Engineering Bachelor’s degree from the University of Zimbabwe as well as an MBA in General Management from the University of the Free State, South Africa. His water sector experience spansfor more than 20 years from his tenure as a University of Zimbabwe student cadet with the then Zimbabwean Ministry of Water Resources and Development.

Combined with his excellent language skills, his expertise includes the practical elements of the management of government and donor funded infrastructure projects that include water. He has impeccable skills for financial management and governance as well as the requisite interpersonal elements such as building and sustaining networks, capacity building, and knowledge and diversity management.

Mr Sauramba’s vision for SADC-GMI is to ensure that groundwater management issues are granted equal priority in national and international water management discourses, and prominently featured in water legislation or policies in Southern Africa.

At the same time, he wants SADC-GMI to substantially elevate the necessity for cooperation on shared aquifers in the region so that sustainable groundwater management and development is able to positively contribute to the social and economic development of the 250-million people residing in the SADC member states. Through all this, he wants to mainstream issues of climate change, poverty and gender within the development agenda.

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