Completion of abandoned hydro projects’ll add 2000MW to national grid – Official

The Minister of Water Resources, Mr Suleiman Adamu, has said that another 2,672 megawatts of electricity would be added to the national grid due to ongoing as the ministry intensifies effort to complete nine hydro projects located in five states.

The states are: Kaduna, Taraba, Gombe, Benue and Nasarawa.

The Minister made the call recently at the Nigeria Media Water Week in Abuja.

The minister said since 2015, it had focused on completing the many inherited hydropower projects across the country.

These include the 30MW Gurara I hydropower project in Kaduna, completed and put on concession; 360MW Gurara II plant, also in Kaduna, with its engineering, procurement and construction contract already awarded.

Others are the Kashimbila, Dadin-Kowa and Itisi hydropower projects with capacities for 40MW each and located in Taraba, Gombe and Kaduna states respectively.

Adamu said the Kashimbila and Dadin-Kowa hydropower projects had been completed and ready for concession, while a Memorandum of Understanding has been signed on the Itisi project.

It said three other hydropower projects, namely, Bawarku, 182MW; Makurdi, 1,500MW; and Katsina-Ala, 460MW, are all located in Benue State.

The Minister also called on states to show political will in ending the practice of open defecation.

Adamu said for Nigeria to make progress in the Open Defecation-free (ODF) campaign, states must key into the process.

“State governments need to key into these programmes. What we are saying is that the key to the success of this open defecation campaign is with how much state actors are willing to prioritise it to give it all the political support that it is getting at the national level.

“If the political will at the national level is similarly obtained at the state level, I think we can quickly get rid of this problem, but if we at the national level are driving a programme and it is not getting the same push at the state and local government levels, then that is a huge challenge’’.

He said the entire ODF campaign is hinged on advocacy and behaviour change for everyone to build and use their toilets, saying the Federal government would continue to pass that message with the state governments.

The minister noted that annually, the ministry, in partnership with the development partners, brings out the Water, Sanitation Routine Mapping (WASHNORM) survey to ensure progress is made to improve WASH in various parts of the country.

“We are monitoring how much states have fared in terms of improving access to potable water and toilets, handwashing and we share it with the states.