Kano and Ogun States have been selected to begin the pilot implementation of Partnership for Expanded Water and Sanitation (PEWASH) programme for universal access to potable drinking water and sanitation.
Mr Suleiman Adamu, the Minister of Water Resources told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja that the programme targets stakeholders’ collaboration to invest in provision of water and sanitation.
He said that the collaboration became necessary for the rural areas to also benefits from it.
He said that the Federal Government inaugurated the implementation of this programme in a bid to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Six and to keep on with the present administration’s development policy.
“This new approach is intended to galvanise all stakeholders, including states and local government, communities, development partners and the organised private sector to invest more in the provision of water supply and sanitation particularly in the rural areas.
“I am happy to report that the implementation of the programme has commended and so far, 22 states have endorsed the PEWASH Protocol.
“The first two states that promptly responded are Kano and Ogun and they have begun processes for pilot implementation.’’
Adamu explained that the PEWASH is a 15-year programme divided into three phases.
He said that the first phase would cover a period 2016 to 2018, which is the preparation period devoted to sustained advocacy, mobilisation and project takeoff.
The minister said that the second phase would span 2019 to 2025 with substantial increase in project delivery, while phase three would last from 2026 to 2030, which would consolidate the programme implementation.
He said that the National Water Resources Masterplan and Roadmap (NWRMR) had identified that the country has a Hydropower potential of 12,220 megawatts.
He however expressed worry that only 1,930 of its potential had been developed in Kainji, Jebba and Shiroro dams.
“Efforts are in place to fully concession the 30 megawatts Gurara Hydropower Plant with partnership with the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, while the 40 Megawatts Kashimbilla Hydropower Plant would also be concessional.
“However, both concessions were being delayed due to non-completion of the transmission lines that will evacuate the power by Transmission Company of Nigeria and the FMPWH.
“In addition, we are in advanced discussions with potential investors for other hydropower projects including 350 megawatts Gurara II, 750 megawatts Lokoja and 1,000 megawatts Makurdi projects.’’
He said the Federal Government had leased out no fewer than 50,000 hectares of land for commercial farmers to take up agriculture for boosting food security and employment creation.
He said that this was one of Federal Government’s policy to revitalise the River Basin Development Authorities (RBDAs) to deliver on its mandate to boost agricultural production all year-round.
He said that this would also create job opportunities and achieve integrated rural development.
“We have created youth employment opportunities in our river basins, for most of the under-utilised land in the river basins; we have invited commercial farmers to take over them.
“Now, we have leased over 50,000 hectares of RBDA land all over the country to commercial framers to help government deliver its mandate of food security.’’
He said that the Water Sector Roadmap, which had remained a reference action plan had a focus to develop and implement a National Irrigation Development Roadmap, saying the goal was to establish additional 100,000 hectares of irrigated farmland by 2020.
Adamu said that with the current efforts and investments in irrigated agriculture, it was optimistic that by 2019, Nigeria would have additional irrigated agriculture with 42,000 hectares.
Corroborating efforts at scaling up irrigated agriculture, the minister noted that the World Bank funded Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria (TRIMING) Project of 495 million dollars had been able to rehabilitate and expand 42,000 hectares.
He said that the Bakalori, Kano River, Hadejia Valley, Dadin Kowa and Middle Rima irrigation projects had been able to reduce rural poverty through progressive management transfer to water user associations.
He said that the TRIMING concept would be applied for future management of irrigation schemes nationwide, saying that would aid in a sustainable manner the improvement of the living standard of Nigerians. (NAN)
– Dec. 11, 2018 @ 12:29 GMT |