A lot has been said about the achievements of this Administration by both supporters and opposition. Some cynics and skeptics believe there is nothing on ground to show since the coming of this Administration. This aim of this article is to unveil to the general public the giant strides of Masari Administration in the provision of portable water to the teeming population of over 7 million people of Katsina State, despite the limited resources available to it.
Water Reserve and Supply Capacity in Katsina State.
The total impounded Raw Water Reserve in Katsina State is estimated at 392.1 million m3 located at Ajiwa, Zobe, Gwaigwaye, Mairuwa, Turo, Jibiya, Sabke and Dutsinma Dams. The combine Designed Production capacity of Urban Water Supply Scheme (Water Treatment Plants at Ajiwa, Sabke, Mashi, Dutsi, Jibiya, Malumfashi, Funtua, Dutsinma and Zobe) in the State is 96,300 m3 per day.
In 2018 the Sabke Regional Water Supply Scheme providing additional 7,000 m3 per day, 200 m3 per day and 100 m3 per day to Daura, Dutsi and Mashi constructed by the Federal Government was handed over to the State Government for continued operations. Since then, the State took-up the operations and maintenance of the Water Treatment Plant at Sabke, Dutsi and Mashi including the provision of Water Treatment Chemicals, Diesel, and payment of monthly Electricity Bills.
The Zobe Water Supply Scheme which commenced operation in June 2020 is currently serving Katsina and Dutsinma and all the basic input required for Water Treatment and distribution such as Water Treatment Chemicals (Alum, Hydrated Lime, Chlorine) as well as Diesel and Payment of Electricity Bills couple with Operational Staff are being provided by the State Government. The major challenges bedeviling portable Water Production and Supply in the Urban District is the erratic power supply being received from the public electricity Distribution company, the Masari administration is working tirelessly to address this problem by awarding a contract for the procurement and installation of 7.5KVA injection Sub-Station at Ajiwa Water Treatment Plant. The gross inadequate Water Supply Distribution pipes is another factor being addressed by the Masari Administration.
WATER SUPPLY SCHEMES IN KATSINA STATE
At the inception of Masari Administration only Katsina, Dutsinma and Funtua Urban Districts Water Supply Schemes are functioning, even so below their design capacity. Some of the ailing waterworks in Local Government Areas that have witnessed a burgeoning growth of population, like Katsina and Funtua undergone a complete repairs and upgrade, while the Daura Water Supply Scheme was completely rehabilitated, also the government procured and installed submersible pump for Daura Water Supply Scheme within the same period. The Masari administration also awarded the contract for Consultancy Services for design and construction of New Water Works, Transmission Main, and Expansion of Storage and Distribution network of Malumfashi and Kankara Town, which is completed. The Malumfashi Water Supply was restored and the expansion of Malumfashi Dam, offices residences access road and pipeline contract were awarded and completed. The Masari administration also procured and installed a 500KVA Generator for Malumfashi Water Treatment Plant. The contract for replacement of filter media at Dutsinma, Jibia and Funtua was awarded and completed within the period under review, so also the rehabilitation of Bakori Water Supply Scheme.
The Masari administration also awarded a contract for electro-mechanical equipment in the Six (6) Urban Water Supply Schemes which were completed. The construction of Danja Dam and access road was awarded and is on-going. In doing these projects the administration considers only a project’s benefits, disregarding costs. The emphasis was on the benefit of the project to the people. The focus on benefits rather than on cost–benefit ratios was the major reason why the Masari administration considers the investment in water resources a worthwhile investment because it will benefit from 500,000 to 1 million people in any community within the locality.
SEMI-URBAN AND RURAL WATER SUPPLY
The Semi-Urban and Rural Water Supply Sectors are largely neglected by the previous governments, therefore hardly meet their target production design. The infrastructure has been the ones in place since colonial times and no development has been undertaken to expand the reticulations systems to meet the sprawling urban growth by previous administrations. The existing infrastructure also fell into disrepair for lack of maintenance. There was also dearth of water treatment chemicals, like Chlorine Gas, which was imported from United States, Aluminum Sulphate, Hydrated Lime, which are the most important water treatment chemicals. The Masari administration is now spending millions of Naira to import these World Health Organization (WHO) approved chemicals in order to meet the world standard in public drinking- water quality.
AJIWA WATER SUPPLY SCHEME
The Ajiwa Water Works, which was commissioned in 1974, that was 48 years ago, is the major supplier of pipe borne water to Katsina metropolis, Kaita, Batagarawa and Rimi Local Government Areas, it received a huge boost from Masari Administration. In 1974 when it was commissioned it has a production capacity of 25,000 cubic metre per day and the targeted population then was 10,000 to 15,000 people, before its capacity was doubled in 1981 to 50,000 cubic metres. Presently Katsina Metropolis has a population of 505,000 people, which means if combined with the population of the additional 3 Local Government Areas, Ajiwa Dam is providing water to more than 1 million population which is way above its commissioned production capacity. The Masari administration has taken this into consideration by awarding a contract for the expansion of Ajiwa Dam to CCECC a Chinese company.
The obsolete facilities in Ajiwa Water Works and its booster station at Kofar Kaura in Katsina metropolis, has now been replaced with new ones imported from the original manufacturers KSB of Germany. Two brand new Power Generators manufactured by Rolls Royce with a power generation capacity of 2100 KVA each, have been procured and installed at Ajiwa Water Works to augment the epileptic power supply to the plant. A new control panel manufactured by ABB of Sweden was installed. The Masari administration is presently constructing Injection Power Sub-Station in Ajiwa which is about to be completed. With the completion of these projects the Ajiwa Water Works is now brand-new Water Works courtesy of Masari’s Administration Restoration Agenda.
The Government is aware of shortage of pipe borne water in some parts of Katsina Metropolis, the problem is as a result of old age Distribution network, while other places are new settlements that have not been covered with Distribution network. The installation of Six (6) number new pumping machines manufactured by KSB of Germany at Kofar Kaura Booster Station is currently serving Katsina Metropolis, Dutsinma Road, Higher Institutions, Industrial Areas, Dandagoro, New Lay-out, Kaita, Batagarawa and Rimi, while GRA, Goruba Road, Kofar Sauri are getting water by gravity.
The Masari Administration attached a very serious importance to the provision of portable clean water, because of the importance of water in our daily life, and in its efforts to make it easy for all the citizens to have quick, easy access to clean drinking water. The administration in consideration of the economic reality in the state, decided to reduce the charges of water bills in the state to N580 per month and directed the Water Board to deliver Bill every 2 months instead of on monthly basis, the bill if divided by 60 days will translate to N9 per day. If we consider the huge amount of money the government is spending in the purchase of chemicals for water treatment and the high electricity bills coupled with the exorbitant cost of diesel for the Generators. This will testify to Masari administration concerns in easing the burden on people getting clean portable water.
RURAL WATER SUPPLY
In the area of provision of Rural Water supply by RUWASSA, there are over Three thousand (3,000) number of productive Boreholes of the approximate yield of One (1) liter per second which has been constructed. The Total Design Production capacity of over Forty (40) number Semi-Urban Water Supply Schemes in Katsina State is about 180,000 m3 per day, with the addition of 64,000 m3 water supply per day in the Rural Areas. This will boost the total Portable Water Design production capacity to 341,000 m3 per day Statewide. The water supply operation was gradually resuscitated by awarding various contracts covering all the Urban, Semi-Urban and Rural Sectors. Every facility has its capacity doubled to ensure fair daily water supply. The Masari administration Restoration Agenda did wonderful work in the water sector.