The Rivers State Government has given approval to a request by the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project, HYPREP to re-activate state water facilities in Ogoniland as part of effort to provide potable water for Ogoni communities.
In a statement from HYPREP, the Rivers State Commissioner for Water Resources and Rural Development, Prof. Kaniye Ebeku gave the approval to HYPREP when the Project Coordinator, Dr. Marvin Dekil led a team of Management Staff to his office in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Speaking at the meeting, Dr. Dekil informed the Commissioner and his team that HYPREP was set up with the mandate to remediate Ogoniland and provide sustainable livelihood for the people in line with UNEP Report, adding that in fulfilling this mandate HYPREP has a responsibility to provide potable water in the impacted communities as specified in the report.
The Project Coordinator said the visit was also to request for collaboration with the Rivers State Ministry of Water Resources and Rural Development in the provision of water in the impacted communities. He said the request to collaborate with the Ministry was necessary to avoid duplication of projects.
Dr. Dekil explained that in the process of providing water in the impacted communities, HYPREP would need to access the existing water facilities towards rehabilitating them and also install new ones, in both cases he said, the technical expertise of the professionals in the Ministry will be needed especially as the initial facilities were installed by them.
The Project Coordinator assured the Commissioner that HYPREP projects were not at variance with the water policy of the Ministry which is community driven adding that every project of HYPREP was tailored towards community participation and ownership to ensure sustainability.
Prof. Ebeku commended the HYPREP Coordinator, for seeking collaboration with the State Government saying it will eliminate duplication of projects which would have amounted to waste of Government resources. He called on other government agencies and development partners to emulate the HYPREP approach to project implementation.
The Commissioner assured Dr. Dekil of his full support and that of his team to the collaboration and said he will do everything within his power to fast track the process from the Ministry’s end to ensure that potable water is available in Ogoniland for the benefit of the people.
At the end of the meeting, a Committee comprising experts from the State Ministry of Water Resources and Rural Development and HYPREP was set up to work on the modalities for the collaboration towards the provision of potable water for the impacted communities in Ogoniland.