THE Federal Government, on Tuesday, lamented what it described as huge percentage of failed water projects across the country and vowed that it will not allow it to continue.
It said that it was aware that 60-70 per cent of water scheme projects relied on foreign exchange to be successfully executed and that the situation was why it was becoming difficult for state governments, which have responsibility to provide water to semi-urban areas to do so.
Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, stated this while speaking at the opening ceremony of 2016 edition of Water Africa and West Africa building and construction exhibition and seminar in Abuja.
The event, which has as its theme, “Infrastructure Challenges Facing Nigeria in the 21st Century” was organised by M/S ACE Events Management of the United Kingdom.
The minister lamented that the country’s industrial sector was suffering as things were not properly planned and managed in the sector.
He said that it was necessary to have regulatory framework, which would enable private sector to take part in developing the water sector, especially in the areas of generation and distribution.
Adamu disclosed that most of the efforts at the ministry were geared towards rejuvenating and redirecting river basin authorities to deliver expected goals.
According to him, plans were on to commercialise the river basins in the country so that they did not depend on government any more.
The minister who lamented the impact of inefficient power supply said his ministry was in the process of creating a unit to evaluate equipments being used for water projects, and said that it was already working with Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to ensure that the country did not become dumping ground for all sorts of equipment that were not useful for the water sector.
He said steps were being taken to look for where to get more energy-efficient equipment to power water equipment in the country.
He said, “There is potential for new equipments and I hope this conference can take up the challenge on ways to deliver affordable water. There is a huge market for these equipments and I hope some of you will take up the responsibility to establish some of the production lines.”
Also speaking, Minister for Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, who was represented by Chike Anikammadu, said that efforts were being made to motivate the deployment of modern technology for mass production of housing in all the states of the federation and Abuja using the traditional procurement platform and the contractor finance initiative model.
He said that the vision of the building and construction sector included a well-informed private sector that was committed in every aspect of the deal, describing the sector as one that cannot exist without sustained participation of the non-government development partners and other relevant stakeholders.
Earlier, the managing director of ACE Event Management UK, Tracey Nolan-Shaw said the event was organised to proffer solutions to the challenges facing providers of infrastructure for water and sanitation sector as well as the organisations in the building and construction industry.