(Water Resources Ministry Reports) – The Nigerian Government has officially received the revised edition of the Integrated National Water Resources Master Plan document which was originally developed through partnership with the Federal Ministry of Water Resources from the Japanese International Corporation Agency (JICA).
The Minister of Water Resources, Sarah Reng Ochekpe who received the document also inaugurated a Project Monitoring Unit (PMU) made up of a committee to monitor the implementation of the master plan document in Nigeria.
While receiving the revised edition of the Master Plan document in her officer on Wednesday March 5, 2014 in Abuja, the Minister said that JICA commenced review of the Master Plan document in August 2011 and progress reports 1 and 2 were presented to the steering committee and other stakeholders during discussion and workshops. She added that detailed discussions were held at various times with the Technical Department to enrich the report with the final interim report presented to all stakeholders in a workshop in Abuja on December 3, 2013.
Sarah Reng Ochekpe noted that the first edition of the document was formulated by the Federal Ministry of Water Resources and supported by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in 1995. “Fifteen years later, the Nigerian Government considered it necessary to review the Master Plan because of so many changes which involved increase in population, increase in water demand, globalization, climate change and many other related activities that have occurred over the years,” she explained.
According to her, the final report of the document was a guide to all activities in the water sector not only at the federal level, but also at the states and local government levels as well as all the private stakeholders in the water sector. During the inauguration of the monitoring committee for the possible implementation of the master – plan, the Minister appealed to the members of the committee to take the assignment seriously.
She said: “I charge you to take this assignment very seriously and to see that this document is put to effective use. You are expected to come up with effective work plan on how to carry out the implementation, to ensure that we use the National Water Resources Master Plan effectively. You are also expected to advice the Ministry on how to achieve the objectives of the master plan,” she added.
The committee comprised fifteen members with the Director of Planning, Research and Statistics in the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Laraba Bagaiya as chairperson.
In his presentation at the event, the Chief Representative for JICA, Seki Tetsuo said that the revised edition of the master-plan marked the beginning of a new era in the water sector in Nigeria.
Seki Tetsuo implied that the master – plan would not work magic if not implemented and followed up as scheduled. He called on stakeholders and other relevant organizations in the country, particularly the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to make strong assurances and commitments towards the implementation of the master plan by playing the central role among relevant Ministries Department and Agencies.
While encouraging International Development Partners to incorporate the Master Plan in their projects, Tetsuo urged meaningful discussion between the Federal, States and Local Governments on the utilisation of the document.
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