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SHAME! Water scarcity hits Idoma community as residents fetch drinking water from gutter

Written By Idoma Television on Friday, February 23, 2018 | 2:45:00 AM

By Ameh Comrade Godwin

Residents of Benue South senatorial district, particularly Otukpo, Ogbadibo and Okpokwu LGAs of the state have cried out to the state government over the ongoing scarcity of drinking water in the area.

Due to lack of water, many people in the affected areas have resorted to buying water from vendors as well as fetching from the well, streams and gutters.

Investigation by IDOMA VOICE have shown that the situation in worst in Otukpo, the powerhouse of Benue South as resident now fetch drinking water from mud and well.

A resident of the area, Patience told our reporter that, residents of Otukpo town wake up as early as 4am to go in search of drinking water.

Findings also showed that CGC Nigeria Limited, the contractor handling Katsina-Ala and Otobi water works, has suspended operation.

The contractor stopped supplying water following the inability of the state government to fulfill the 2013 contract agreement.

The state government had signed a two-year contract with CGC Nigeria Ltd for the maintenance, operation and training of some staff of the ministry in 2012 at the cost of N1.9 billion.

In Okpokwu, the story is not different as residents of the area struggle to get drinking water on quotidian.

A councilor representing Eke Ward, Engr. Dan Atayi, called on the state government under the leadership of Samuel Ortom to come to their rescue.

He said, “It is sad to know that over 40 years, our people lack portable water supply. They drink from open streams, Rivers and dilapidated boreholes! Some died of water-born diseases such as cholera etc. Ruptured typhoid killed many because of unhealthy intake of Water!

“This is a serious matter and non-political, let no one make it look like one. I am pleading because am handicapped to some extent but do know that politics is and should be for the interest of governance, hence I believe that motorised boreholes be drilled across the villages of Eke and by extension, Okpokwu, for the people to drink clean and healthy Water,” he said.

However, the state government on its official website said it had spent over N600m to fix water in the affected area.

It said, “Upon assumption of duty, His Excellency Samuel Ortom paid visits to Otobi-Otukpo and Katsina-Ala Water Works only to find out that they were not functional due to non-payment of contract obligations by the immediate past administration. The Governor made part payment of about six hundred million naira (N600,000,000.00) and the contractor has since returned to site while the benefitting communities are now enjoying portable water supply.

“The Ortom administration has ensured that the Water Board receives regular supply of water treatment chemicals and diesel to maintain unhindered water supply. Diesel is also given to NASME so as to maintain regular water supply to North Bank communities.

“The Governor has released over 8.2 million to facilitate the maintenance of pipelines in Makurdi so as to improve water supply in these key towns.”

However, residents of the areas wondered where the money that the governor allegedly released went to.

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