Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu has said Nigeria is confronted with expanding population growth and uneven distribution of rainfall across the country which has invariably overstretched the use of groundwater.
He also identified the impact of climate change and the increasing demand for water resources among the prevailing challenges of acute water shortage in the country.
The minister highlighted the challenges on Thursday while addressing stakeholders in the water industry on the review of the National Water Resources Master Plan held in Kano.
Adamu the urgent need for coordinated management of water resources by all tiers of government to check the concern.
Speaking on his behalf, the director of Water Resources and Technical Planning in the ministry, Mrs Alice Ojokwu, reassured of Federal Government’s determination to activate the roadmap to stimulate national integration on water development.
The minister who disclosed the revitalisation of the National Water Resources Master Plan regretted the lack of political will of successive government to implement the master plan since it was developed in 1995.
He, however, noted that the new action plan has the full participation of states in irrigation.
He, therefore, urged inclusive investment in irrigation infrastructure.
Adamu noted that the stakeholders meeting which drew participants from the Northwestern states of Kano, Jigawa and Katsina, was aimed at creating awareness among the relevant agencies and state ministries on the content of the reviewed National Water Resources Master plan.
He said the Federal Government was committed to the implementation of the plan and resolved to end open defecations through the recent signing of Executive Order 009.
He said, “The National Water Resources Master Plan was first developed by by the ministry in collaboration with Japan International Cooperation Agency JICA in 1995.
“The plan was first integrated development plan aimed at optimisation of the nation’s water resources as well as financial and economic investment options in water resources development in order to achieve accelerated growth, integrated and coordinated water development, agricultural production and food security.”
Speaking on the occasion, the state governor Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, said that the implementation of the National Water Resources Master plan is a joint responsibility between federal, state, local government and private sector.
The governor was represented by the permanent secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, Alhaji Hussaini Umar Ganduje.