…engages 77,400 youth volunteers for 3 months
By Gabriel Ewepu
ABUJA- THE Minister of Water of Resources, Engr Adamu Suleiman, Thursday, disclosed the Federal Ministry of Water Resources giving N370 million support to the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, on improving water production.
This was made known by Suleiman in his keynote address delivered at the opening ceremony of the 29th National Regular Meeting of the National Council on Water Resources, NCWR, with the theme ‘Actualizing Sustainable Development Goal-6: Prospects and Challenges’ at Kasarawa, Sokoto.
He said: “The Ministry has also developed well-coordinated policies and programmes for improving access to WASH towards achieving the SDG 6 in Nigeria.
“To this end, we initiated and implemented a number of national WASH emergency responses to the COVID-19 pandemic through the following actions: Completed the construction and rehabilitation of 492 Water Supply Schemes in all 36 States & FCT.
“Supported the 36 States and FCT Water Agencies with N10 million each to improve water production; Constructed 256 Sanitation facilities in 36 States and FCT.”
Meanwhile, the Minister also made it known that the Ministry has “Trained over 1,500 community personnel on the Operation and Maintenance of Solar Powered Borehole Systems; and engaged 77,400 Youth Volunteers for three months to support the ‘Clean Nigeria: Use the Toilet’ Campaign and other WASH activities.”
To boost energy sufficiency in hydropower generation, he disclosed that the Ministry has completed and concessioned Gurara Hydropower Project, Kaduna State (30 MW), 2017; Kashimbila Hydropower Project (40 MW), 2017; and Dadin-Kowa Hydropower Project (40 MW), 2019.
“The Ministry is equally considering the possibility of deploying the abundant dam reservoirs across the county to generate solar energy. In this regard, two dam reservoirs have been designated as pilot schemes for Floating Solar Hydro Technology.
“In addition, the Ministry has initiated the Hawal Inter-Basin Water Transfer Project in Borno State and engaged with prospective investors for PPP in the Benue I (1,500MW), Benue II (750MW) and other places for hydropower development as well as flood control on Rivers Niger and Benue. The 360MW Gurara II hydropower project is also in the pipeline”, he said.
According to him the Ministry has developed 138,000 Ha of irrigated land, of which a total of seven irrigation projects have been fully completed while two others have been completed on sectoral basis, with16 irrigation projects have been prioritised to be completed soon.
“Strategic development and management of irrigation and drainage as well as effective and sustainable irrigation practices are the most viable intervention options that will ensure national food security and poverty alleviation through job creation and greater income generation.
“It will also curtail rural-urban migration. It is also accepted that these are very key responses to diversifying the economy and creating jobs for the youths. To date, the Ministry has developed 138,000 Ha of irrigated land. A total of seven irrigation projects have been completed fully while two others have been completed on a sectoral basis, which 16 irrigation projects have been prioritised to be completed in the near future.
“Appreciable progress has been made in the World Bank assisted Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria (TRIMING) Project. The achievements recorded on this Project include but are not limited to the following:Rehabilitation of 13,273 Ha in Kano River Irrigation Scheme completed and handed over to the beneficiaries.
“Overall physical progress is at 93.50 per cent while financial progress is at 95.44 per cent (original contract) and financial progress is 86.54 per cent (addendum contract) as at April, 2022. The last sets of sectors were handed over to farmers on 31st August 2022.
“Rehabilitation of all 5,750 Ha in Hadeija Valley Irrigation Scheme completed and handed over to farmers. The last sets of sectors were handed over to farmers on 1st September 2022.
“However, the devastating flood of that year, inundated some sectors that are now being rehabilitated. This scheme is scheduled for commissioning by President Muhammadu Buhari at the end of this month.
“Formation and strengthening of about 839 Water User Associations (WUAs) and Groups for all TRIMING irrigation schemes
“Construction of 2nos tomato aggregation centres at Bugau and Shagari in KRIS have been completed.
“A comprehensive Matching Grant Mechanism (MGM) manual for accessing TRIMING matching grant facility has been developed and 3nos Grant Management Committees have been established. A roll out and disbursement plan is ongoing for 2022”, he said.
Also in his keynote address, the Minister said the Federal Government recently took a significant step to join a United Nations Treaty known as Water Convention on the Protection and Use of Trans boundary Watercourses and International Lakes as a proactive measure towards ensuring sustainable management of trans boundary waters.
The Minister recalled that the commitment to join the Treaty was guided by a roadmap for its accession to and future implementation of the United Nations Water Convention, which was ratified by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on 27th October, 2022.
He added that Nigeria is expected to benefit from the support of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, which initiated the Convention, to address current water challenges in the Countries of West Africa, including population growth, increasing urbanization, pollution, irrigated agriculture and industrialization.
Engr Adamu further revealed that the Ministry, in its quest to keep track of its activities, has produced a document titled ‘National Water Sector Monitoring and Evaluation Framework” which is predicated on the proposed National Water Resources Bill and key Policy Statement no.11 of the National Water Resources Policy (2016) which states that “A robust Monitoring and Evaluation System will be applied to measure both output and impact of water resources investments and programmes on the lives of the beneficiaries and the environment, improve accountability, ensure successful project delivery and judicious use of the nation’s resources.”
He noted that six States including Bauchi, Enugu, Adamawa, Borno, Yobe and Oyo have domesticated the Framework, while Lagos State has commenced the process of domestication, therefore urging the remaining 29 States to do the same.
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