3 January 2013

Nigeria: 120 Water Schemes Rehabilitated in Cross River, Akwa Ibom

Calabar — Engr Mfon Essien, Managing Director, Cross River Basin Development Authority says it has rehabilitated 120 water schemes in the state and Akwa Ibom in 2012.

He stated that the newly constructed water schemes would not be vandalised because they do not require battery or diesel to operate and make water available in the benefiting 120 communities.

Essien said in 2012, the authority rehabilitated more than 120 water schemes and converted their operating systems to solar.

"We have also been able to inject new life into all our statutory irrigation projects by providing them with two additional tractors, fertilizers and agro-chemicals," he said, adding that the people of the benefitting communities had written to the authority to express their appreciation for the projects.

He said the water schemes were part of over 300 projects initiated by the CRBDA over the years which were vandalised and rendered nonfunctional.

He said that they working very hard because they have the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on water and the national target before them.

Essien further said that apart from the rehabilitated water schemes, the basin also assists federal government establishments within the catchment states with their water requirements.

"For example, the Federal Government Girls' College, Calabar, where we installed a brand new borehole with solar, when they hosted 104 unity schools across the country.

"Also, the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) Calabar got a brand new borehole with solar and the Prison quarters in Calabar was also equipped with a brand new borehole with solar," he added.

He said members of the National Assembly from the two states gave generous support to the projects.

He noted that, out of the projected N5.1 billion proposed by the authority for the 2012 physical year, only N2.5 billion was released.

Essien said: "We cannot say exactly how much we spent on these water schemes but on the average, our budget this year has been funded 49.8 per cent and "in all, what we have been given this year is just about N2.5 billion instead of N5.1 billion for all our activities."

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