26 February 2013

Nigeria: Water Now Runs in Keffi After Students' Protest

Barely a day after the Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK) students' demonstration against lack of water in which at least two students were shot dead by armed soldiers and policemen, water has started to run without a stop in the ancient town.

The university students had - after close two weeks absence of water supply - for six straight hours, protested along major roads in Keffi, obstructing vehicular traffic. Truckloads of armed soldiers who stormed in on the students, fired shots to break the protesters, killing two and injuring four others.

By Tuesday, residents of the ancient town told Daily Trust that water began to flow few hours after the protest.

"Water ran for the first time in two weeks, few hours after the students' protest", said a resident who said her family had to rely on stream water sourced in distant places for domestic use.

Student Union Government (SUG) leader, Rabiu Omame Tijani also told Daily Trust by phone that water ran shortly after the protest. "All of a sudden, water began to run after the protest. It appeared somebody somewhere was sabotaging the masses", Comrade Tijani said.

General Manager of Nasarawa State Water Board, Engr. Ibabrahim Safiyanu, confirmed by phone that water ran after the protest, saying "power supply improved, so we pumped and released water to Keffi."

Engr. Safiyanu blamed the problem in Keffi to a drop in power supply, which, according to him, had affected pumping of water from Mada Water Works, about 36kms from Keffi along Keffi-Akwanga Road , to Keffi metropolis.

He said settlements along the road including Gudi, Garaku, and Sabon Gida also rely on the only one service line from Mada Water Works, as a result of which supply to Keffi dwindles even when power supply is steady.

But he assured that with the improved power supply, Keffi will enjoy steady water supply.

Daily Trust however observed that students of the university will not enjoy the supply that picked up, suddenly after their protest because they were sent off with the closure of the school by its management.

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