The governor of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu, has inaugurated water and sanitation facility projects in Amaiyi-Uhu community of the state to improve quality of life of the residents.
Speaking during the occasion on Monday in Amaiyi-Uhu, Isiukwuato Local Government Area, Mr Ikpeazu said that the projects were initiated as part of state government’s efforts to provide safe and sustainable water sources to the people.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the projects were funded by the United States Agency for International Development, USAID, and Coca Cola Foundation in partnership with Abia State Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency.
The governor who was represented by his deputy, Ude Oko-Chukwu reiterated government’s commitment to prevent the outbreak of water borne diseases by providing potable water.
Mr Ikpeazu said the state government had initiated a program aimed at providing safe water in every part of the state, especially in the rural areas.
He said his administration would partner with any organisation embarking on development projects in Abia through provision of enabling environment, manpower and security.
He also urged the people of the area to exhibit appropriate maintenance culture on the projects.
“The members of the benefitting community should take ownership of the projects by maintaining and protecting the facilities from vandalism and breakdown.
“While various committees formed should be poised to do the work of monitoring the facilities effectively for posterity sake,” he said.
In his remark, Stephen Haykin, the Mission Director of USAID said the decision to provide rural communities with safe water was informed by the need to tackle poor access to clean water.
Mr Haykin said that he was confident that the initiative would play a crucial role in supplying and providing improved access to safe and potable water.
Also, Nwakanma Onymelekwu, the Public Communications Director of Coca Cola Foundation said that the initiative would impact positively on the development of the area.
Mrs Onyemelekwu said that in a bid to realise the establishment of a comprehensive water scheme in the year 2020, the initiative would be extended to other rural communities.
Meanwhile, Eze Ifeanyi Ugoagha of Amaiyi-Uhu community thanked the state government and the development agencies for their efforts at assisting his community solve its lack of water.
Mr Ugoagha said that the efforts made to bring succour to members of the community would be held in high esteem, adding that the facilities would be “guarded with jealousy”.