Wole Adedeji, Ilorin
Relief may soon come the way of residents of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, as Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has directed the state’s Ministry of Water Resources to ensure steady water supply to the city within 100 days.
Ilorin, for close to 20 years now had been suffering acute water shortage which gets worse, each passing year even when successive governments claimed to have spent billions of Naira to fix the two water dams in the metropolis.
Governor AbdulRazaq, last week, asked the Water Resources Ministry as well as its consultants to deliver water to every part of the state by getting all the dams working. He pledged to give them all necessary supports for the venture.
The governor gave the compulsory water supply directive during his off-the-curf visit to Agba Dam, Asa Dam Water Works and Western Reservoir (Adewole) where he lamented that no part of the state, not even Ilorin, gets constant water supply despite the over N6 billion already sunk into the water reticulation project.
The governor threatened that he might resort to wielding the big stick in the form of “house cleansing”, if the ministry does not deliver on his directive.
“We have a mandate to deliver water to our people and within the next 100 days. For a start, I want to see constant water supply in specific areas of Ilorin, it may be Ilorin East, South or West or anything (where these particular dams cover),” he said after listening to the Ministry’s officials.
“Don’t keep talking. We want action. Our people want water. No part of Ilorin or anywhere in this state do people have water. Raise a memo to state what the problems are and what’s needed to fix them. People are tired of (empty) talks.
“We have to solve the problems now. Forget the big word reticulation, let’s fix the problem. We need immediate memo on what the problems are and we will give you all the support.”
Governor AbdulRazaq said his administration was determined to provide potable to the entire state, even if in phases, in line with its campaign promises.
“We need to think out of the box. I’m serious about having water in our homes within 100 days. We have the mandate to deliver water to our people,” he said.
Alhaji Yahaya Tunde, General Manager of Water Corporation, said constant electricity supply and treatment materials were the major challenges.
He said all the water works were currently disconnected from power supply because they owe the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) at least N24 million. He said they have a monthly electricity bill of N9.7 million.
Apart from the ongoing strike action by staff of the water works, Tunde also said they needed modern equipment that can monitor water pressure and detect when pipes go bad.
Governor AbdulRazaq had earlier visited the Kwara State Internal Revenue Service (KW-IRS) where he also directed the body to submit a memo to give a clear picture of the happenings there, including how to perform optimally.