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…As Water Resources Minister, Emir Of Gombe Applaud Gov. Inuwa’s Zeal, Commitment In Tackling Water Supply Challenges

Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya has moved to put an end to the age-long water supply challenges in the rapidly growing Gombe metropolis and environs with the flag off of the rehabilitation, upgrade and expansion of the Gombe Regional Water Scheme inline with his administration’s mantra of project continuity, sustainability and progress.

The mega Gombe regional water expansion project is being carried out on a 70-30 per cent partnership agreement between Gombe State and the Federal Government.

Under the arrangement, Gombe is funding the 70 per cent amounting to N8.43 billion while the Federal Government is contributing 30 per cent of the financial cost of the project which is N3.447 billion .

The state government is also bearing the cost of consultancy services amounting to over N400 million.

Flagging off the Multi-billion Naira project which aims to rehabilitate, expand and upgrade the senile Gombe Regional Water Supply Scheme, Governor Inuwa expressed the stern disposition of his administration in providing adequate and efficient portable water to all people of Gombe State.

He lamented the nonchalance of the previous administration in managing the issue of water scarcity, maintaining that his government will not tread the same path.

He said when he assumed office in 2019, the Dadin Kowa Water Treatment Plant which supplies water to Gombe Metropolis was in a deplorable condition prompting his government take some bold emergency measures to arrest the situation.

“Within the first 100 days in office, I commissioned a taskforce to address the water problem in Gombe Metropolis. Through this intervention, we mobilised contractors and undertook essential repairs and rehabilitation of water distribution channels which enabled us to pump over 50 million litres of water daily to Gombe and it’s environs”, he explained.

The governor also identified other factors that contributed to the escalation of water problem in the area to include: rapid urban expansion and exponential increase in population coupled with influx of Internally displaced persons from across frontier states affected by Boko Haram insurgency; the scenario he said has put more stress on the existing social amenities, especially the water supply facilities constructed about 15 years ago.

“Our Administration understands the significance of sustainable water supply to the livelihood and well-being of our people as articulated in our 10-year Development Plan, the Development Agenda for Gombe State (Devagom)”.

He said in the past three and a half years, his administration has shown commitment to addressing water shortages in both urban and rural communities through collaborations with FG, World Bank and other development partners.

“Through RUWASA, we drilled and rehabilitated over 600 boreholes across our eleven local governments. We are also partnering with the Federal Government and donor agencies through initiatives like The Sustainable Urban and Rural Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene, SURWASH and Partnership for Expanded Water Supply Sanitation and Hygiene, PEWASH across the state inline with the SDGs no.6.

“This is not and will never be the last; we are going to do more in order to deliver on good governance and sustainable progress to all our communities”.

He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his untiring efforts in addressing the needs of Nigerians. He also aporeciated the minister for his cooperation and support towards the actualisation of the project.

The governor also commended the projects consultants, Messrs Global Ecological Consultants Nigeria Ltd and the Contractor handling the project, Jidadu Ventures Ltd for the quality work, promising to complete the project in five months time.

“Let me make a pledge that before the end of May, 2023, this project would have been completed by the grace of God”, he promised.

In his address, the Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Sulaiman Adamu commended Governor Inuwa’s zeal and resilience in ensuring the actualisation of the mega project.

He said the journey started when the FG signed MoU with Gombe State government on 12th August, 2021 in its bid to reach the national and international targets on water supply and sanitation.

He explained that “Gombe State Government shoulders the lion’s share of the cost which amounts to more than 8 billion 43 million Naira plus consultancy services of about 419 million Naira representing 70% of the total cost of the contract. Federal Government will provide intervention of 3 billion, 447 million only representing 30% of the contract”.

The Minister said, “as you can all see by yourselves, the project is not a campaign promise, but a reality on ground’.

He expressed confidence in the contractor handling the project, recounting his track records of quality projects executed in many parts of the country.

The minister called on people of Gombe State to take full ownership of the project and use it to the fullest of it’s potentials while avoiding anything that will compromise its quality and integrity.

While giving the overview of the project, the Director Water Supply in the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Engr Danjuma Madaki said the project comprised of building of three new booster stations with structures and state-of-the-art facilities, laying of 160 km pipelines across Gombe metropolis and environs, establishment of borehole-based water scheme in Tabra and rehabilitation and expansion of the abandoned Wuro-Juli water scheme among others.

In a goodwill message, the Emir of Gombe, His Highness, Alh. Dr Abubakar Shehu Abubakar III CFR who is the Chairman Gombe State Council of Emirs and Chiefs, thanked Gov Inuwa for his visionary policies that have direct bearing on the masses, pledging his support to the project.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Commissioner of Water Resources, Mijinyawa Yahaya thanked Governor Inuwa Yahaya for conceiving the project which he said when completed will guarantee adequate water supply for both domestic and commercial uses in accordance with international standards.

The ceremony which took place at the New Tumfure Booster Station featured formal flagging off of the projects and symbolic laying of pipes at NTA booster Station along Bauchi Road.