ABUJA – The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved a 16-year National Water Resources Master Plan to ensure proper management and development of the nation’s water resources.
The Minister of Water Resources, Mrs Sarah Ochekpe, said this in Abuja, when she briefed State House correspondents after the weekly FEC meeting, which was presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan.
Ochekpe said that the master plan was developed by the ministry in partnership with the Japan International Agency, and would be implemented in three phases.
According to her, the first phase will last from 2014 – 2020, the second phase from 2021 – 2025, and the third phase from 2026 – 2030.
“We got an approval for the National Water Resources Master Plan 2013, which we developed in partnership with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency.
“The master plan will last from 2014 to 2030 and the intention of the plan is to ensure that the water resources in Nigeria are properly managed.
“That we have adequate supply and utilisation of water in the country in acceptable quality and standard and we have national coverage. [eap_ad_1] “Through the master plan, it is intended that we will be able to gather and collate appropriate information that will help in terms of hydrological, hydro-metrological and hydro-geological information management within each hydrological area and basin within the country.“
According to Ochekpe, the plan also contains proposals on how to use water resources to mitigate the effect of climate change to support the development of irrigated agriculture in Nigeria.
She said that the master plan recognised the roles and responsibility of all stakeholders in water sector and would ensure proper investment in the water resources development in the country.
The minister said that the master plan, which acknowledged the fact that government funding of the water sector might not be enough to bring about the development of the sector, proposed the commercialisation of water services to increase the revenue base of the sector for the maintenance facilities and development of new ones.
Ochekpe said that the plan had also identified the private sector and the Public Private Partnership as additional sources of funding for the sector.
She said that donor agencies would complement the limited budgetary allocations from the Federal Government, adding that by the master plan’s estimation, the nation’s demand for water would increase from its current 5.93 billion cubic metres per year to 16.58 billion cubic metres in 2030. (NAN)