EU commits N40bn to water projects in 14 states in Nigeria

The European Union has committed N40 billion to implement various water supply projects in 14 states in the country from 2012 to 2017.

Dr. Jens Hoegel, the representative of the European Union to Nigeria, said this at the ongoing Regular Meeting of the National Council on Water Resources in Abuja on Thursday.

Hoegel said this would also help in meeting the SDG targets on water and sanitation.

He said: “The project is being implemented in 14 states of Anambra, Cross River, Jigawa, Kano, Osun, Yobe, Adamawa, Ekiti, Plateau, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Rivers and Edo to the tune of N40 billion.

“It also includes the Water Supply and Sanitation Sector Reform Programme II and III and in the Niger Delta Support Programmes.”

Hoegel said Nigeria has the potential to be the economic powerhouse of Africa if it deals with its weak institutions and massive inequality.

He said a large number of its population lack access to basic services, including water, adding that this was detrimental to development in all aspects.

The representative said EU has been supporting institutions to perform their constitutional responsibilities in state water policy and legislation, adding that this had led to benefitting states drafting water bills for the benefit of their population.

Hoegel said EU was also supporting urban and small town water institutions in six states to deliver sustainable water supply services, saying this had led to improving community management of water projects.

The EU delegation added it was saddening to note that only one in three Nigerians have access to potable water and sanitation, saying this was what was fueling open defecation in the country.