By: JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
Kano State Government has signed a N12. 7 billion partnership agreement with the Federal government for expanded water supply, sanitation and hygiene (PEWASH). Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje signed for the state government while the Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman Adamu signed for the Federal government.
According to statement signed by the Director – General, Media and Publicity,
Government House, Kano, Ameen K. Yassar, the PEWASH is a 15-year programme that is divided into three phases. The Phase I, from 2016-2018, is the preparatory stage that is devoted to advocacy, mobilization and take-off. The Phase II will span 2019 – 2025 for substantial infrastructural development while the Phase III will consolidate the programme.
Upon completion of the three phases, it is envisaged to achieve zero percent defecation and 100 percent access to water supply especially in the rural areas.
“The project clearly shows the concern of Mr. President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari has for our rural people who largely depend on hand pumps and motorized boreholes” the governor stated.
According to Dr. Ganduje, “This intervention has come at the right time. The programme has actually dovetailed into our five year development plan”.
“By the signing of this partnership agreement today, we will swing into action because we have made appropriate budgetary allocation for the project”, he added.
In the same direction, the governor announced that President Buhari has approved a development facility of $200 million, with the Islamic Development Bank, for integrated water and agricultural development in Kano state.
He noted with delight that Kano has also keyed into the Third Urban Sector Reform Project which was signed between the Federal Government and the government of France, which entailed a credit facility of $75 million for the rehabilitation Challawa water treatment plants in the state as well as the Greater Kano water transmission and distribution system network.
The governor thanked the European Union, UNICIF and DFID for working closely with the government of Kano State, for many years, stating that the collaboration has resulted in tremendous improvement in access to water supply and sanitation in the state.
Dr. Ganduje explained that his administration budgeted N34 billion this year to the water sector even as it commits N500-600 million monthly to provide 120-200 million liters of water daily for urban and semi-urban consumers. The federal government, he hinted, is supporting his administration on production cost recovery by metering the water consumers.
“In order to strengthen water delivery and services to the grassroots, we have established by law a WASH department in all the 44 local government areas of the state. Already, the departments have taken off with the necessary key staff”, he added.
Earlier, the Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman Adamu explained that his ministry established the programme “to mobilize all stakeholders’ efforts and channel them towards the same goal, objectives and targets of providing sustainable water supply, sanitation and hygiene for our people, especially those living in the rural communities”.