Residents groan as water scarcity hits Dutse metropolis
Residents of Dutse, the Jigawa State capital are groaning over acute water scarcity, which has paralysed activities in the state.
Some of the worst-hit areas are metropolitan Dutse, Zai quarters, Katangare, Murahusawa, Sabuwar Maranjuwa, Old Maranjuwa settlement, Gida Dubu Housing Estate’s, all in metropolitan Dutse and beyond, where residents rely on commercial water vendors, who sell a Jerrycan of water for between N30 and N50.
The Guardian investigations revealed that most taps in the city are dry without a drop of water for a couple of years despite huge investment injected by the government through the jigawa State Ministry of Water Resources
The scarcity is coming, even as the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene National Outcome Routine Mapping Exercise published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) with the support of United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and other Development Partners put Dutse second to Lagos State with 92 per cent, in terms of access to the water supply.
It was also learnt that the lapses might not be unconnected with the damage of 13 major water supply summers, distributing water to all nooks and crannies of the state, which had been left unattended to in the last year.
Officials of the state’s water board, who spoke to The Guardian, said they have written severally to their superiors to no avail.
According to them, the repairs of the water facilities need not cost much, but it has not been attended to for unknown reasons.
The Guardian gathered that the situation is similar to an earlier survey report that claimed 49 per cent of Jigawa State’s households have access to basic hygiene services, which was the highest among states in the country. Whereas, the state is presently engulfed by a high concentration of filth all over the ancient city.
Investigations also revealed a situation of heaps of filth in eight Local Councils of the state.
Residents are worried that if it is unchecked, it may derail its earlier status of being the second-highest in the country.
A resident at Gida Dubu quarters, Comrade Shehu Garki, said it is unfortunate that the government is not living up to its commitment to the people in the water sector.
He said: “We have been staying in this housing estate without water as most of our taps are without water for a long period. Even our motorised boreholes are without water. We constantly rely on commercial water vendors for our water.”
Another resident, Bello Gadadin said they are yet to enjoy a steady supply of pipe-borne water supply, despite being told by the Water Resources Commissioner that N75 million was spent on repairs and replacement of damaged pipes in Dutse metropolis.
But the Commissioner of Water Resources, Alhaji Mohammed Garba Hannun Giwa, said the state has injected huge investment in major water treatment, aimed at ensuring a steady water supply to the populace.
He said the ultimate goal of the water sector was to achieve universal access to safe drinking water and sanitation services in the state.
According to him, this will safeguard public health and ensure that citizens live a more qualitative and productive life.
He said: “Jigawa State government acknowledges the positive correlation between improved water and sanitation services and health status of the population, thereby taking the issue of hygiene and improved access to safe drinking water and sanitation as a cardinal aspect of governance.”
On the damaged water facilities, he said: “I have given a directive to my lieutenants to forward their request on procurement of all needed water facilities for prompt actions, and we are on course.”