The Kwara State Commissioner for Ministry of Water Resources, Hon. Usman Yunusa Lade, has called for collaboration with the Lower Niger River Basin Development Authority (LNRBDA) with a view to ensuring quality and efficient working relationship to provide potable water for the people in the state.
The Commissioner stated this in a meeting with the Managing Director of the Lower Niger River Basin Development Authority, Engr. (Dr.) Adeniyi Saheed Aremu, when he paid a courtesy visit to his office in Ilorin the state capital.
Hon. Lade who described the visit as a friendly one stressed that there was the need between the Ministry and agency to incorporate new technological innovations into improving the availability of potable water across the nooks and crannies of the state.
“The purpose of this visit is the need to further reestablish quality and formidable partnership for the development of water infrastructures and to further incorporate new technological innovations into improving the availability of potable water across the nooks and crannies of the state”, he stated.
He counseled the Managing Director on the need to convert some of the Waterworks and Borehole Driven Mini Waterworks into Solar Driven system, noting that this will help to eliminate the challenges of incessant epileptic power supply and the maintenance cost of making the waterworks afloat and fully functional.
He stressed that out of the Ninety-Six (96) Waterworks across the state, less than fifty percent (50%) is operational and they are not working at full capacity.
Responding, the Managing Director of the LNRBDA, Dr. (Engr.) Adeniyi Saheed Aremu appreciated the Commissioner’s initiatives in ensuring the state is further developed in terms of water supply and effective maintenance of the infrastructures provided by the State Government.
The Managing Director briefed the Commissioner that the Federal Government has done a lot of developmental work in the water sector and in making water available for the people of the state through the various water projects such as the Upgrade of Malete Waterworks in Moro local government; Construction of Patigi Waterworks, Patigi; Special Intervention on Agba Dam (New) Waterworks in Ilorin and Oyun (Offa) New Waterworks to mention but a few.
He explained that his agency do not have the capacity to operate the day to day running of water works facilities provided, but the state government and benefiting communities should be able to maintain and protect facilities located in their domain.
He said that work is still ongoing in satisfying the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as regards water in the state.
Dr. Aremu informed the Commissioner that his agency has made available surface and groundwater for sanitation and irrigation schemes that could be enhanced for Municipal and Industrial usage.
Aremu emphasised that in the aspect of sanitation, the State Government must be ready to tap into the counterpart fund scheme for the provision of public toilets across the state in order to make the state attain the Open Defecation Free (ODF) status.