Insurgency responsible for delay in AfDB North East assisted rural water supply — Minister


The Minister of Water Resources, Mr Suleiman Adamu says insurgency in the North East is responsible for the delay in the African Development Bank (AfDB) assisted Rural Water Supply and Sanitation in the region.

The minister said this while speaking at an interactive session with the House of Representatives Committee on Aids, Loans and Debt Management on Thursday in Abuja.

In a document presented to the committee, the minister said that the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) component of the programme was being financed withb150 million dollars loan at both the Federal and State levels.

He listed the amount for each of the project components as follows – Federal Ministry of Water Resources, 5.9million dollars, Adamawa State Government, 33million dollars, Bauchi State Government, 29million dollars.

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Others are Borno State Government, 38 million dollars, Gombe State Government, 16million dollars, Taraba State Government, 16million dollars  unallocated amount, 12million dollars.

He said that each state was directly responsible for the programme implementation, while FMWR only carried out oversight and quality assurance.

According to him, the entire programme has three main components, Service Delivery, Economy Recovery and Institutional Strengthening.

The minister said that the specific objective of the programme was to improve the quality of life by increasing access of the poor and vulnerable to basic social services in water, sanitation, hygiene.

According to him, others are health and education, livelihood opportunities, food security and strengthened safety net system in affected states in the North East.

He said while implementation units at both States and Federal level were striving hard, they were not able to achieve the expected planned objectives within the scheduled time due to constraints.

According to him, the first disbursement of funds was made 18 months after the loan agreement was signed, which led to the delay in procurement activities.

He said another constraint was the lack of understanding of AfDBs mode of operations at the outset, especially at the states.

“The insurgency in parts of Borno and Adamawa states made it difficult for service providers and programme staff to gain access to some LGAs and communities within the two states.

“This is expected to be improved owing to recent government decision.

” Finally, without any doubt, the advent of COVID-19 pandemic contributes gravely in delaying implementation of the programme,” he said.

The Chairman of the Committee, Rep. Dayyabu Safana (APC-Katsina) and other members of the committee commended the minister for the submission.

The chairman said that the essence of the interaction was to ascertain and avail Nigerians where the loans approved were being spent.(NAN)