Water Resources Management Officer

African Development Bank (AfDB)
Pretoria, South Africa
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
Mid-Level (5-7 Years)
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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The African Development Bank (AfDB) is the premier multi-lateral development finance institution fostering economic growth and social progress in Africa. The AfDB’s primary goal is to reduce poverty and improve living standards by mobilising resources in and outside Africa, and providing financial and technical assistance for development projects and programs in Africa.


The Vice-Presidency for Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery (RDVP) is responsible for operational relevance, efficiency and effectiveness of the Bank Group’s operational programs and activities. The RDVP ensures that the Bank operates successfully across its Regional Members Countries (RMCs) and oversees the full implementation of all aspects of the Bank’s Regional Directorates.

The Agriculture, Human and Social Development Complex (AHVP) leads in implementing two of the five goals, namely “Feed Africa” and “Improve the Quality of Life for Africans”. The Complex comprises five departments: (i) Agriculture and Agro-Industry Development; (ii) Agriculture Finance and Rural Development; (iii) Gender, Women and Civil Society; (iv) Water Development and Sanitation; and, (v) Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development.


Within RDVP, the Bank has five (5) Directorates, one in each region of Africa: North, South, East, West, and Central. Each Regional Directorate is headed by a Director General and is staffed with the relevant sectoral functions and administrative capabilities for rapid delivery of services to client countries. The Regional Directorates provide overall strategic direction to country offices within the regions and are responsible for the Bank’s operations, business development, project management and overall effective delivery of the Bank’s High 5s”. The position is under the Southern Regional Directorate (RDGS) and located in Pretoria, South Africa.

The mission of the Agriculture, Human and Social Development Complex is to contribute to the Bank’s efforts to reduce poverty and promote sustainable development in RMCs. It does so by: (1) contributing to development of country and regional strategies and building sector knowledge; and (2) focusing on project/programme origination and delivery for approval of operations defined under the High 5 priorities. The Water Development and Sanitation Department (AHWS) is responsible for the coordination of the Bank’s water development and sanitation-related activities to enhance synergies and contribute to achievement of all High 5s. The African Water Facility (AWF) is housed under AHWS.

The African Water Facility (AWF) is an initiative of the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) to mobilize resources to finance water sector facilitation and investment activities in Africa. The AWF has been established within the context of the Africa Water Vision and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The African Development Bank is managing the AWF at the request of AMCOW. The resources of the AWF are primarily allocated to: water resources projects and programmes focused on improving the enabling environment for sustainable national and regional water resources management, preparing projects and programmes for immediate capital investments, and providing resources for strategic and small-scale investments. The AWF plans, organizes and carries out activities related to project and programme cycle activities (identification, preparation, appraisal implementation and supervision) in the above areas, in all African countries; undertakes studies on issues regarding water sector development and related areas; provides advice and technical assistance to African countries; and ensures coordination and synergy with other partners and donors in the water and sanitation sector in Africa. The AWF currently manages a portfolio of €166 million spread all over Africa. 


The Water Resources Management Specialist is responsible for representing AWF in the sub-region, developing, and supervising a portfolio of projects in line with AWF strategy. The ultimate objective is to assist Regional Members Countries in mobilising resources for the water sector.

  1. Represent AWF in the region and establish partnerships with financing and research institutions;
  2. Develop the AWF portfolio in the sub-region in line with the AWF strategy through identifying projects and conducting a dialogue with governments, river basin organisations, local governments, utilities, private sector and NGOs;
  3. Supervise AWF portfolio in the sub-region ensuring that project objectives are met particularly with regard to financing of follow-on investments;
  4. Develop knowledge products in order to communicate AWF’s impact and lessons learnt

Duties and responsibilities

As an AWF representative, the Water Resources Management Specialist will be responsible for supporting the development of the AWF portfolio in the sub-region.  Under the overall supervision of the manager for RDGS2, and the AWF Coordinator, the incumbent will be responsible for managing the portfolio of projects and will ensure that project objectives are met in an efficient and sustainable manner. S/He will undertake various activities, which among others include but not limited to the following:

Represent AWF in the sub-region

  • Initiate, lead and/coordinate AWF participation in dialogue with governments, local governments, river basin organisations, water utilities, private sector and NGOs;
  • Promote AWF through participating in sub-regional and regional fora and events;
  • Communicate the AWF strategy and impacts in order to catalyse preparation of funding requests;
  • Liaise with Development Partners to identify potential co-funding opportunities and ensure financing of follow-on projects prepared through AWF grants, including options such as climate finance.

Develop AWF project portfolio in the sub-region

  • Identify innovative projects and programmes that could be funded by AWF, initiate and conduct project identification missions and develop a pipeline of AWF projects in line with AWF strategy;
  • Participate in the screening of proposals received from applicants, particularly to ensure that they meet the mandate and objectives of the AWF, including cross-cutting issues such as climate change and gender considerations;
  • Organize and undertake project preparation missions either solely or in cooperation with other multilateral development agencies;
  • Appraise projects and programs for AWF’s support and provide recommendations regarding the form of intervention as well as amounts, terms and conditions of grants;
  • Ensure that projects are designed in accordance with the strategic directions of the AWF and incorporate state of the art knowledge and current areas of focus; such as climate change, gender, green growth; etc.


Supervise AWF’s portfolio in the sub-region

  • Ensure that grant agreements are signed promptly after approval, and that all grant conditions are fulfilled in order to permit rapid implementation of projects and programs;
  • Provide assistance to Recipients in understanding and applying the AWF operational procedures relating to grant administration as well as the applicable AfDB rules and procedures for the procurement of goods, works and services;
  • Monitor project disbursements and ensure disbursement forecasts are met through supporting and advising executing agencies on project implementation issues;
  • Examine procurement documents to ensure conformity with AfDB’s policies, rules and procedures;
  • Identify and supervise consultants financed by the AWF to prepare, appraise or supervise projects and programs or to carry out studies and other operational activities, etc;
  • Undertake desk and field supervisions to ensure that projects will meet the intended objectives and recommend any necessary corrective measures;
  • Prepare project completion reports (PCRs) in accordance with the AWF’s operational procedures;
  • Ensure that investments under preparation are developed to a bankable or financeable stage, involve AfDB sector specialists in the project preparation and liaise with governments, and potential financers in order to secure the project financing;
  • Ensure timely completion and closure of completed projects;
  • Ensure that project audits as stipulated in the AWF Operations Manual are undertaken in a timely manner;

Develop Knowledge Products

  • Identify and facilitate key experts (individuals and institutions) in Africa at strategic moments to provide support to beneficiaries during project design and implementation;
  • Foster the creation of a conducive environment for knowledge management in the projects, in particular, by: (i) involving  water management experts in Africa in projects and providing effective support; (ii) identifying innovative approaches, results and lessons learned from success stories and ensuring fast information sharing among beneficiaries; (iii) encouraging and supporting the dissemination of results at the required level for replication, where necessary; (iv) preparing summary project reports and sharing them with a large audience, and (v) ensuring the effective recruitment of consultants to undertake various knowledge management activities;
  • Undertake and/or supervise studies and analyses on issues pertaining to water resources management, sanitation in Africa;

AWF Administration/Liaison

  • Contribute to the preparation of the AWF Annual Report, and the Annual Workplan and budget as required;
  • Respond to the requests for information from the AWF Co-ordinator and the AWF team at HQ in a timely manner;
  • Participate in the co-ordination or organisation of AWF activities or participate in AWF specific events as required;
  • Undertake assignments as may be required by the AWF Co-ordinator from time to time

Selection Criteria

Including desirable skills, knowledge and experience

  • A minimum Master’s degree or equivalent in water, sanitation, water resource management, engineering or irrigation.
  • A minimum of 6 years of relevant experience in water resources management, water supply or sanitation projects in project development and/or financing. Experience in Development Finance Institutions is necessary.
  • Good knowledge of water resources management in national or transboundary context and/or water supply or sanitation techniques; Ability to advise on some of the following themes: Integrated Water Resources Management, transboundary water resources management, investment planning, water  infrastructure project preparation (including sanitation, irrigation, hydropower, etc.), climate resilience, structuring of informal sanitation value chains, financing mechanisms for capital and O&M costs of water facilities, private sector mobilization, Public-Private Partnerships preparation;
  • Demonstrated skills in project management.
  • Conversant with AfDB’s or MDBs procurement rules and procedures.
  • Effective advisory skills
  • Ability to deal with sensitive issues in a multi-cultural environment and to build effective working relations with colleagues
  • Ability to work independently with little supervision as well as part of a multicultural team
  • Ability to drive change
  • Ability to be flexible, open minded with integrity
  • Client and results oriented individual holding “a can do attitude”
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English and/or French, with a good working knowledge of the other language.
  • Competence in the use of the standard Microsoft software applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook) and SAP.


Should you encounter technical difficulties in submitting your application, please send an email with a precise description of the issue and/or a screenshot showing the problem to: HR Direct HRDirect@AFDB.ORG