Kano - Gov. Rabi'u Kwankwaso of Kano State says his administration is committed to financing the hydropower component of Tiga and Challawa Dams in the state’s 2013 budget.
Kwankwaso made this known when the Minister of Water Resources, Mrs Sarah Ochekpe, paid him a visit in Kano on Thursday.
He noted that the dams had been captured in the federal government’s budget but the delay in harnessing the benefits prompted his administration to finance it.
"The dams had since been completed but the hydropower component has not been utilised.
"It has been difficult to get both the federal government and development partners to install turbines for the generation of electricity from the dams.
"For this reason, the state government has taken the bull by the horns and will now take up the project 100 per cent and finance it.
"Next year, the first project on the budget will be Tiga and Challawa dams for which we have already concluded the paper work."
Kwankwaso said the state government had invested N5.8 billion on water supply in 2011.
He said his administration was working hard to ensure accessibility to water in all urban and rural areas in the state.
"We have done so much to improve water supply, by purchasign chemicals, chlorine hand pumps, and additional pipelines to major directions.
"All our regional water schemes are ongoing and we are collaborating with the various local government areas to purchase generators and maintenance equipment.
"Our target is to ensure that we have potable water supply across the state,’’ Kwankwaso said.
Kwankwaso said since he assumed office, water supply to Kano city had improved from 40m litres per day to 250 million litres of water in 2012.
He urged the Federal Government to rehabilitate abandoned dams in the states, which were at various stages of completion.
The Minister of Water Resources pledged the federal government’s commitment to the rehabilitation of dams through the transformation agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan.
Ochepke appealed to the state government to maintain facilities at the Water Laboratory located in Kano.
She also urged Kwankwaso to look into some allegations of encroachment of projects at the Hajejia/Jama'are River Basin Development Authority, a parastatal of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources.