Nigeria’s Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman Adamu has restated Federal Governments’ commitment towards increasing access to potable water for all Nigerians by 2030.
Adamu said this on the sidelines of the ongoing Africa water Week in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.
He said that without universal access to safe water and sanitation, poverty and inequality cannot be eradicated in any country.
“We are working to ensure that all Nigerians have access to potable water by 2030 through urban water sector reform programme.”
“We realise that implementing the first and second urban water reform programmes have resulted in moderate success and improved piped water supply, if we put more efforts, we can achieve more.’’
Adamu said that the results from the Millennium Development Goals, showed that Nigeria was not able to meet its target due to sole reliance on budgetary allocation. He said Nigeria would soon launch the National Programme on Partnerships for Extending Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, aimed at meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs 6) of universal access to water.
This programme, the minister said, was a partnership between the three tiers of government, the development partners and communities to commit funds and mobilise towards meeting the SDG 6 by 2030.
“We have also realised that one of the reasons why Nigeria failed to meet the MDGs was because we have been relying only on budgetary allocation from the three tiers of government.
“Due to dwindling resources, there is a huge challenge of scaling up; this is why we must include all other stakeholders.
He said Nigeria needed to take the lead on its issues, rather than relying also on development partners.
He said Nigeria would do everything possible to reform the water sector because of its centrality to health, agriculture, and others.
He said the ministry has created a data bank and census for water supply and sanitation for all water infrastructures in the country. Adamu emphasised the need for attitudinal change toward public utilities, saying Nigeria must begin to see the importance of paying for water consumed.
He stressed the role of political will and commitment from state actors and chief executives in funding water, saying they are the decision makers in parts of the country.
He said the ministry would continue in its advocacy to ensure that governments begin to allocate more funds for such projects.
The minister commended the World Bank and other development partners for funding water projects in the country and pledged government`s commitment to increasing fund allocation to water.
The 6th Africa Water Week aspires to lay the building blocks for Africa to achieve the SDG 6 as well as other inter-linking SDGs connected with water resources management. The week represents a political commitment at the highest level for creating platform to discuss and collectively seek solutions to Africa’s water and sanitation challenges.