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Water Scarcity Raises Disease Fears In States

The scarcity of potable water is affecting the day-to-day activities of many Nigerians across the country and exposing them to various health hazards, Daily Trust investigations have shown.

The Minister of
Water Resources Engineer Hussaini Adamu had last month during the 2019
water day declared that “there is no state or city in this country that
can boast of 100 percent pipe borehole water supply, none.”

He
said many states have refused to prioritise the provision of water
supply, by refusing to reticulate the bulk water provided in dams and
river basins to houses.

According to the minister,
constitutionally, the actual provision of water supply to the tap is the
responsibility of state governments and local governments.

A
report released last year by the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey
(MICS) said 90 percent of households in Nigeria consume contaminated
water and other impure substances.

According to the report, 90.8 percent of households in Nigeria drink water contaminated by faeces and other impure substances.

The MICS report was carried out in 2017 by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in collaboration with UNICEF.

The
World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF had in 2012 ranked Nigeria
third behind China and India as countries with the largest population
without adequate water supply and sanitation coverage.

The acute
water shortage is ballooning despite billions of naira budgeted for
water resources by the federal and the 36 state governments annually.

Our
reporters said many Nigerians, especially those living in the state
capitals, have resorted to using water from boreholes “indiscriminately
dug without recourse to any health guidelines.”

In Abuja, the
Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the Federal Government, last Wednesday,
approved a memo for the award of contract for supply of water and field
for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Water Board at the sum of N368
million including five per cent VAT.

But potable water has
remained scarce. Even in the city centre such as Maitama, Wuse II,
Asokoro, residents rely mostly on boreholes for most of their daily
water needs.

Residents spoken to in Jahi, a suburb of the FCT,
urged the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) to tackle the
perennial water scarcity in the area.

In rural parts of the FCT also, many residents rely on streams for water.

Taps not running in Gombe for months

The
inability of the Gombe State Water Board to provide potable water to
residents of Gombe metropolis has thrown most households into untold
hardship.

Our correspondent, who went round Gombe metropolis,
said for months the taps of the few areas connected to the main water
treatment plant are not running. This has forced most residents to rely
on commercial boreholes as an alternative, even though at exorbitant
prices.

Also, those who cannot afford to buy from the private vendors spent hours on queues at such boreholes which cost less.

The
residential areas mostly affected by the scarcity are Tudun Wada,
Bolari, Pantami, Herwagana, Kumbiya-Kumbiya, Jekadafari, and Malam Inna
area, among others.

In Tudun Wada, for instance, there has been
no supply from the state water corporation for months. Even in areas
like Jekadafari where the taps run, a check by our correspondent shows
that the supply has ceased for the past one month.

Even highbrow
areas like GRA, New GRA, Federal Low Cost, Buba Shongo, Shongo Housing
Estate, Orji Estate and Abuja quarters are also feeling the impact of
the scarcity. The residents who are mostly wealthy rely on commercial
water tankers for water.

However, the scarcity-hit most at the newly established residential areas like Arawa, Kagarawal, Riyal quarters, Bomala, Nayi Nawa, Alkahira, Unguwa Uku and Tunfure quarters, because they are not even connected to public water scheme.

Source:- Dailytrustng

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