The Minister of Water Resources, Mr Suleiman Adamu, has expressed concern over the delay by state governments in keying into completed dam projects by the Federal Government towards improving water supply in the country.
Adamu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, that it was sad to note that previous collaborative efforts between the federal and states government had failed to work.
According to him, it is expected that when the federal government constructs dams to impound bulk water, the states would key in, to construct treatment plants and conveyances pipelines to distribute the water to the end users.
“From the visits, I made to numerous states, I have seen colossal waste of resources through such efforts, one of the major challenges is that many of the states are not keying into the completed dam projects.
“Many water supply facilities constructed by the federal government that are supposed to be complemented with construction of transmission and distribution networks have been left unattended to in many states.
“This is another cause for concern as it is either that the states are not serious on provision of potable water to the people, or that the model simply needed to be reworked,” he said.
Adamu said it was the obligation of all citizens to lay emphasis on the obvious fact that water is one of the world’s most valuable resources, saying it is a basic necessity of life for both plants and animals.
He said the demand for water in national development is astronomically increasing due to rapid population growth and urbanisation, adding that human beings cannot survive without water as the body is made up of about 70 percent water.
“Water, as we all know is very important for the attainment of national food security, hydropower generation, domestic and industrial use.
“The availability of a reliable and clean supply of water is one of the most important determinants of our health,” he said.
Adamu, while quoting a World Health Organisation (WHO) report said water borne diseases represented a major burden to human health.
He said the present administration, placed high premium on the provision of water and sanitation to the citizens in an affordable and sustainable manner, towards the attainment of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) number six.
Speaking on the Kashimbilla Dam Project, Mr Lawal Muhammad, the Acting Director, Dams and Reservoir Operations in the ministry, said the delay in the connection of power transmission lines to the national grid was responsible for non-completion of the multipurpose dam in Taraba.
Muhammad said the dam and the power generating components of the project had been completed.
He said the outstanding aspect of the project was the erection of power transmission lines that would convey electricity to the national grid.
Muhammad, however, said that this is the responsibility of the Federal Ministry of Power, Works, and Housing.
He said work on water supply component of the dam had gone far, while work on the reticulation network had also reached an advanced stage.
By Tosin Kolade