It’s not FG responsibility to provide water for citizens – Minister

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By; AMOS MATHEW, Kaduna.
Minister of Water Resources, Engr Suleiman Adamu has said it is not the responsibility of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to provide water supply to Nigeria citizens.
Adamu however said it is the responsibility of State and Local governments to supply water to Nigerians, adding that the Federal Government could only intervene to support them to ensure sufficient supply.
He disclosed this while speaking to journalists shortly after a tour of some facilities and commissioning of National Secretariat of the National Water Resources Capacity Building Network at National Water Resources Institute (NWRI), Kaduna.
He disclosed that a new programme, Partnership for Extended Water Sanitation and Hygiene, will soon be launched to ensure water supply and sanitation for public places and for rural areas.
According to him, “It is not the primary responsibility of Federal Government and Ministry of Water resources for that matter to provide water supply to people and their households.

“It is the responsibility of States and Local governments to provide water supply. Federal government responsibility is to manage the entire water resources of the country.
“If there are areas that are deficient or they need new source of water ways, we develop them through building of Dams and so on. It is left for the State and Local government to treat water and distribute to their communities”.
On challenges facing the Ministry, the Minister said, “We could do a lot better than what we are doing if we have more funds. And like any other federal institutions, sometimes when a policy is in place, it is difficult to get it trickle down to States and Local government that you buy in and move along like one team.
“Thirdly, we need to go back to proper planning of our projects and programmes. We have the National Water Resources Masterplan that was never put in use by 100 per cent. We need to adopt it and move on.
“Of course and other challenges that are common to every other government agencies, for me coming from the private sect, I think things are being too slow for my liking. I think there is nothing that I can do. The processes and procedures have to be followed”.
He assured that his Ministry will continue to support and encourage NWRI in delivering on its mandates and ensure that its reputation is sustained.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Executive Director, NWRI, Dr. Emmanuel Adanu said the Institute will continue to carry out activities that impact directly on the society.
“Some of these activities include but not limited to, development of curriculum for National and Higher National Diploma courses in the Water Resources Engineering Technology in collaboration with the National Board for Technical Education(NBTE), Drinking Water Quality  Assessment in eleven States of the Federation including lead poisoning in Zamfara State, youth empowerment training programmes.
“Others are Reservoir sedimentation studies of some dams across the country; Assessment for Water Safety Plans in three State Water Agencies, including the FCT Water Board; Development of Code of Practice for Water Well Drilling in Nigeria, Institutional Assessment for Water Supply and Sanitation as well as MDAs involved in the provision of irrigation services.
“Also, Water demand and allocation studies in Galma Dam and Rigasa catchment; Triggering of Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) and collaborating with UNICEF to build capacity for awareness creation and sanitation”.
Dr. Adanu however, requested the Ministry’s support in the area of patronage of short and long term training programmes of the Institute.
“In the current financial year for instance, the budgetary allocation to the institute has tremendously increased, while patronage of its talored-made short courses by the Ministry and its departments has taken a positive turn. I believe that with this sustained tempo, the best will soon come.
“The recent approval by the Federal Executive Council of the National Water Resources Bill, National Water Resources Policy and The National Water Irrigation and Drainage Policy stand out as landmarks of your administration along which the NWRI will adjust in its relevant mandate”. He added.

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