FG: Nigeria not water scarce, saves N53bn from contract review

Minister of Water Resources Suleiman Hussein Adamu has said the federal government saved the sum of N53 billion from the review of some projects awarded by previous administrations.

He also said the Muhammadu Buhari administration  had upped its game in the sector with about 32million Nigerians now having access to pipe borne water across the country.

Suleiman  also said contrary to believe in some quarters ‘Nigeria is not water scarce  but water economy scarce’

The minister stated this Monday in Abuja while briefing journalists on the  PMB Scorecard (2015-2023) in the management of water resources.

At the briefing was Minister of Information Lai Mohammed and other top government functionaries from the two ministries.   

Responding to questions from journalists  on the abandoned contracts completed by the administration and cost of completion, he said: “There are quite a lot of them, I can’t really list them out now, I will request you reach out to us and we will give you the figures.”

Suleiman, who said there was contract review of the projects after some stringent processes involving professionals, said “this has saved us about N53 billion. And after further review by the Bureau for Public Procurement, I think we had additional N8billion or N9 billion.”

He said the saved fund was  significant to the ministry as it further demonstrated the prudent management of resources, and high levels of transparency and accountability under the administration.

The minster also said the administration improved on the accessibility of pipe borne water for the citizenry, with 32million Nigerians currently being accommodated.

Asked of this was a pass mark, he answered in the affirmative, saying it was not the federal government’s responsibility to provide water, but that of the states.

Responding to the increasing number of boreholes across the country, he said this is one of the things the controversial water bill seeks to address.

He said if the states had been playing its part like the federal government, the citizens won’t have any problem with water, noting that “Nigeria is not water scarce, but water economy scarce.”

To achieve the right access to pipe borne water, Suleiman said the sector must be priviatised, citing the “poor Niger Republic where water is being priavtised and residents have quality access” to it.