The Borno Government on Friday said it has constructed over 200 solar motorized boreholes to enhance access to portable water in Maiduguri metropolis and adjourning communities.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, Mustapha Aminami, made the disclosure in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Maiduguri.
Mr Aminami disclosed that the projects were executed in the past four years; to augment water supply from the Alao water treatment plant, to meet the demand of the growing population in the metropolis.
He said that boreholes and water tanks were provided at residential areas, markets and other strategic locations to enhance access to safe drinking water for human and animal consumption.
Mr Aminami revealed that the State government in collaboration with International Committee of the Red Cross, ICRC, also rehabilitated a water facility in Maiduguri with the capacity to deliver nine million liters of water daily.
The permanent secretary added that a German-based NGO, GIZ Organisation had also constructed 11 boreholes in various communities while United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, also constructed boreholes and provided water treatment chemicals to the state.
On rural water supply, Aminami said over N100 million was spent on the upgrade, rehabilitation and construction of boreholes as well as provision of power generators at Bama resettled community.
Mr Aminami added that similar projects were also executed at Monguno; Askira Uba, Chibok and other resettled communities in the state.
“Water supply is one of the cardinal objectives of the state government.
“The challenge we have is the demand and supply; we recorded influx of population in the metropolis which outweighed water supply.
“The Aloa treatment plant was designed to supply water to about 500, 000 people, however, presently we have a population of over three million people in the metropolis due to displacement caused by the insurgency.
“Other challenges militating against adequate water supply include obsolete equipment; climate change, destruction of water facilities by the insurgents and vandalisation of boreholes by thieves in the communities.
“To meet the challenges, government adopted proactive programmes to enhance water supply in accordance with international standard,” he said.
Mr Aminami explained that the State government had deployed 30 newly recruited engineers and other specialists to the ministry, to deal with manpower shortage and enhance its operations.
The permanent secretary sought for the support of development organisations to improve water supply services and called on the people to protect facilities provided in their respective communities.
According to him, the state government had earmarked over N3 billion for water sector in the 2019 fiscal year.