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Southern African Development Community (SADC):

River Basin Organisations


A summary of the River Basin Organisations (RBOs) within SADC is presented below.

Additional information on all of the RBOs within SADC can be found on the International Cooperating Partners website:

Inkomati Tripartite Permanent Technical Committee

The Tripartite Permanent Technical Committee (TPTC) is a collaboration between South Africa, Mozambique and Swaziland. The cooperation on the joint management of the Inkomati Basin was initiated in 1992 with the signing of the Komati Accord between South Africa and Swaziland.  Mozambique signed the Accord in 2002, making the TPTC one of the first RBO in Southern Africa. The mandate of the TPTC is to manage the water flow of the Inkomati River and Maputo River, specifically during times of flooding and drought

A website will be established soon.

International Commission of Congo-Oubanqui-Sanqha (CICOS)

The International Commission for the Congo-Oubangui-Sangha Basin (CICOS) was established in 1999. Member states of CICOS are Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo. The main objective of CICOS is to improve cooperation amongst the member states and eventually to promote Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM).

In recent years attention has been on large hydropower projects that use the large quantities of water from the Congo River.


Kunene Permanent Joint Technical Commission (PJTC)

The detailed feasibility investigations and related activities for the first phase of the development of the hydropower potential of the Cunene River and the diversion of water into northern Namibia set in motion by the 1964 agreement culminated in the Third Water Use Agreement of 1969 which initiated the construction of the proposed Cunene River Scheme. This agreement established a Permanent Joint Technical Commission (PJTC) and made provision for Namibia to abstract water at Calueque for diversion to the Cuvelai basin in Northern Namibia.


Lake Tanganyika Authority (LTA)

The Lake Tanganyika Authority (LTA) was established in December 2008 by the governments of Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, and Zambia. The LTA promotes regional cooperation required for socio-economic development andsustainable management of the natural resources in the Lake Tanganyika basin.  The LTA coordinates the implementation of the Convention on the Sustainable Management of Lake Tanganyika and the Regional Integrated Management Programme, which focuses on establishment of sustainable fisheries, catchment management, pollution control, climate change adaptations, and monitoring programs.


Limpopo Water Course Commission (LIMCOM)

The Limpopo River Basin is shared by four SADC Member States, i.e. Botswana, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique, and has a total catchment area of approximately 408,000 km. The catchment characteristics are very diverse covering different climatic and topographic zones as well as land use types, including protected areas. Also the social and economic development features are highly diverse. The commitment of the riparian states managing their water resources together dates back to 1986, when the “Limpopo Basin Permanent Technical Committee” was jointly established. In 2003 this cooperation was fostered through the multilateral agreement to establish the Limpopo Water Course Commission (LIMCOM).


Orange-Senqu River Commission (ORASECOM)

The Governments of Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and South Africa formalised the Orange-Senqu River Commission (ORASECOM) through the signing of the "Agreement for the Establishment of the Orange-Senqu Commission" on November 2000.ORASECOM was the first commission established following the regional ratification of the SADC Protocol on Shared Water Course Systems.


Pangani Basin Water Board (PBWB)

The Pangani River Basin covers an area of about 42,000 km2 shared between Kenya and Tanzania. The two countries established the Pangani Basin Water Board (PBWB) and the Pangani Basin Water Office (PBWO) in July 1991 to jointly manage the water resources in the basin. The PBWO reports to the PBWB. The Board’s task is to advise the basin water officer on all matters concerning: the apportionment of water supplies, the determination, diminution or modification of water rights, measures to be taken in case of drought, and on priorities to be given to different uses of water in the basin.


Permanent Okavango River Basin Water Commission (OKACOM)

The three Okavango Basin states Angola, Botswana and Namibia signed an agreement in 1994 that formed the Permanent Okavango River Basin Commission (OKACOM). The Agreement commits the member states to promote coordinated and environmentally sustainable regional water resources development, while addressing the legitimate social and economic needs of each of the riparian states. The three countries recognise the implications that developments upstream of the river can have on the resource downstream. Most of the river is currently undeveloped and is recognised as one of the few "near pristine" rivers in the world.


Ruvuma Joint Water Commission

The Governments of the Republic of Mozambique and the United Republic of Tanzania have very recently established the Ruvuma Joint Water Commission with the principal objective of ensuring sustainable development and equitable utilisation of common water resources of Ruvuma River basin.

The Ruvuma River forms the boundary between Mozambique and Tanzania for a length of 650 km from the coast and has a total length of about 760 km. The entire area of Ruvuma River basin is about 152,200 km2 of which 65.39% are in Mozambique, 34.30% are in Tanzania, and 0.31% is in Malawi (SADC 2008).


Zambezi Watercourse Commission (ZAMCOM)

The agreement to establish the Zambezi Watercourse Commission (ZAMCOM) was signed in 2004 by Angola, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Malawi, Tanzania and Mozambique. Currently, seven of the eight countries have signed the protocol, but only four out of the seven have ratified it, with Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Zimbabwe still outstanding. The Commission will only come into force when six out of eight countries ratify the Agreement. Meanwhile an interim Secretariat has been established and a draft document prepared to guide the process of operation.



Explore the sub-basins of the Orange-Senqu River

Explore the principles of Integrated Water Resource Management applied to the Orange-Senqu

Learn about water governance in the Orange-Senqu basin

Tour video scenes along the Orange-Senqu River related to Governance

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