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The Justice Development and Peace Commission (JDPC) has called on the Kogi State government to expedite action on all the ongoing water projects across the state.
The Organisation which the Social and development arm of the Catholic Church made the call in Lokoja on Wednesday in a statement issued and signed by Rev Fr Leonard Odomeja, the JDPC Coordinator for Lokoja diocese.
Odomeja said that the call had become necessary following a report made by the social accountability team of the JDPC which recently went on assessment tour of some of the water projects.
He decried the slow pace of work on the projects, especially the rehabilitation of the old Okene water works which was flagged on April 7 with a completion period of three months.
“It is worrisome that after six month of the promise, the JDPC team observed that the project is not close to completion yet.
“Dry season is almost here and considering the untold hardship water scarcity brings upon women and children in Okene and other parts of the state, it is important for the state government to deliberately make efforts to avert this hardship by completing this project as scheduled,” the statement said.
The JDPC also expressed concern that more than six years after completion, the N10 billion Greater Lokoja Water project has not been reticulated to cover Felele, Sarki Noma, Crusher, Jimgbe and other satellite areas in Lokoja as planned.
“The commission appeal to Kogi State government to take advantage of the two large bodies of water River Niger and Benue and other numerous rivers and streams in the state to end the water crises rocking several communities in the state,” it added.
The JDPC is currently implementing a Social Accountability Project titled; Legislative Advocacy for Improved Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in 13 selected communities in the state.
On sanitation and hygiene, JDPC commended the state government for embarking on the construction of five public toilets in some parts of the state but said that the number was not adequate.
It also praised the Ministry of environment for its efforts to keep Lokoja, the state capital clean, calling on local governments in the state to complement the efforts by paying more attention to issues of water, hygiene and sanitation.
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