WaterNet Board Elects New Chairperson

26 January 2015

The Waternet Board holds meetings every year during the Waternet/WARFSA/GWP-SA Symposium. Last year was no exception, the board met on the 27th and 28th of October 2014 at the Sogecoa Golden Peacock, in Lilogwe, Malawi. Eng Wilson R. Nyemba the Waternet Chairman from 2005 to 2014, decided to step down and the board members appointed Dr  apologang Magole as the new Waternet Chairperson. Waternet welcomes Dr Lapologang Magole on board as the Chairperson and also wishes her all the best on this new appointment.

Dr Lapologang Magole is a Senior Research Scholar at the University of Botswana’s Okavango Research Institute in Maun, Botswana. She received her PhD in Development Studies (Environmental Policy Analysis) at the University of East Anglia, in the United Kingdom in 2003. Her research work focuses on natural resources governance. Through her research and development work, she has interacted with resource users at grassroots level, donor agencies, policy makers and implementers and has come to appreciate multiple interests and aims with regard to natural resources management and use. Her publications are in the areas of; institutions for management of resources held and used communally,
in particular, land and water as well as issues affecting development and natural resources access by minority communities. Her most recent publications and research work has been on Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) with particular focus on Transboundary Water Resources Management (TWRM).

Dr. Magole has vast experience in stakeholder interaction facilitation (mediation, negotiation, conflict resolution and empowerment), project management and strategic planning. She is also an experienced trainer in participatory planning and learning methods for natural resources management, environmental impact assessment (EIA) and strategic environmental analysis (SEA). Her geographical scope of work has widened from Botswana to the whole of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) through networking and collaborative work.

She serves in several professional boards and has been a WaterNet Management Trustee since 2011.


First of all, I would like to thank the WaterNet family for placing so much faith and trust in me by bestowing upon me such a big responsibility of being the Chairperson of the Board of Trustees and hence, the Network. My greatest appreciation goes to the founding members, past and present Trustees and in particular, the immediate past Chairperson, Engineer Wilson, R. Nyemba, who paved a path that I can follow. I pledge dedication and commitment to the Network and promise to build on the great work of the past Chair and his dedicated team of Trustees while seeking new horizons for taking the Network forward.

WaterNet is an important institution for capacity development in integrated water resources management for the Region. It is also a formidable force made up of academics, water practitioners, experts, policy makers and most important for the future, students and alumni. The network has grown from strength to strength due to the commitment of these variant actors. I am fortunate and pleased to ride on this strength.

My vision and indeed that of the entire Board of Trustees cannot be different from that of Phase III: ‘Achieving sustainability by increasing impact’. This has to continue through the set programmes and increasing membership participation. WaterNet does focus on academic work for regional water management capacity building, but, it is not an academic project. Regional water management issues are real and need practical solutions. Impact is therefore, central to the sustainability of the Network. By registering as a SADC water capacity building subsidiary institution, WaterNet has declared to the peoples of the region that; ‘you can count on us to address water challenges of the region’. I believe there has been impact and the Network has lived up to that statement. While that is clear, what needs to be equally emphasised is that; ‘it is a partnership’. The Region needs to own and resource the Network. During
my tenure, I hope to lead the Board and the entire Network to work on a sustainability strategy that takes Water-Net to new heights! I wish to make it clear that strong sustainability is home grown. Beyond impact, is visibility that draws people and resources to an organization. I, therefore, urge the membership to look forward to the sustainability project over which I wish us to join forces.

I thank you all! May God richly bless you in this new year.

Dr Lapologang Magole


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