The Enugu State Government says it is negotiating a 50-million-dollar facility from the French Development Agency (FDA) to provide potable water in Enugu, the capital city.
The Commissioner for Water Resources, Chief Charles Egumgbe, made the disclosure in Enugu on Thursday while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
He said that getting the facility became necessary following increasing demand of water in the state due rising population.
Egumgbe said that the facility when obtained would be used to make water schemes in Enugu to function optimally.
He said that the loan would attract an interest of not less than 2.5 per cent with a moratorium of not more than eight years payable within 20 years.
“Water supply to the metropolis had almost grounded at the inception of this administration but the story has since changed.
“On the authority of the state governor, the ministry has engaged a contractor to revamp the water schemes in the state.
“The state governor also approved the sum of N100 million for the repairs of broken facilities in Enugu and Nsukka.”
The commissioner said that FDA would collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Water Resources on a pilot project of the assistance in water schemes in Enugu, Ondo and Plateau.
According to him, the consultants who will undertake the job had already carried out feasibility studies of the project.
Egumgbe said that the expansion of the state capital and the consequent influx of people in the area had placed enormous burden on the government in meeting the water needs of the people.
“The capital city is expanding at an alarming rate, thereby, placing enormous burden on the government in supplying water to the reticulated areas of the urban centres.”
The commissioner said that the government was faced with the challenge of generating required revenue from the few customers of its Water Corporation.
Other challenges, according to him, include accumulated debt by some customers, particularly some security agencies that owe over N5 million.
He said that the ministry had set up a water court to try water rate defaulters and had also written to those with accumulated debts to pay up.
The commissioner said that the ministry was optimistic that the sector would be re-engineered to achieve its mandate.
Photo shows Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State.