The Delta State Commissioner for Water Development, Chief Samuel Mariere, has stated that the government awarded a contract for 123 water schemes within the past 10 months.

Mariere provided this information while briefing journalists on the ministry’s activities in Asaba on Wednesday.

He stated that 40 out of the 123 water projects were to be executed jointly by the World Bank, the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, and the State Sustainable Urban and Rural Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene.

”The schemes have just been awarded and contractors have been mobilised with 25 per cent down payment.

”We expect that in the next three months, the people of the state will start enjoying the benefits of those schemes.

”The schemes include rehabilitation and improvement works of Udomi Abavo water supply scheme in Ika South Local Government Area (LGA) of the state and reactivation of Osubi water supply scheme Okpe LGA,’’ he said.

Mariere also revealed that the ministry and its agencies had awarded contracts for 73 water schemes out of which 64 were completed and in good condition, while nine were still ongoing. He identified some of the completed projects, including the rehabilitation of the state water laboratory in Asaba, and the construction of hybrid solar-powered water supply and treatment plants in Tisun and Kolokolo in Warri North LGA.

The commissioner also announced that the State Water Master Plan had been successfully completed by the government.

”We also completed the Performance Improvement Action Plan for various agencies and this attracted a reward of 2.5 million dollars from the World Bank, though we are yet to receive payment.

”The World Bank recently released the sum of $1 million to the state as an initial advance from which we paid the 25 per cent for the water schemes and we also paid our consults,” he said.

Mariere praised Governor Ifeanyi Okowa for his work and said that the concession of the Warri Effurun Water Scheme was another project that was important to him. He explained that the project, which began during the old Bendel state, was now ready to distribute water to homes in Warri, Uvwie, and Udu LGAs of the state.

He explained that there had been a request by the concessionaire and financial institution for a guarantee from the state that if the water produced was below 70% of revenue, the state would agree to offset the shortfall above 20%. The State Executive Council had recently approved the guarantee for about N4.5 billion, which the State House of Assembly also approved.

Mariere expressed confidence that the water situation in Asaba, Okpanam, Ibuza, Warri, Uvwie, Udu, and many other communities, both in the coastline and upland, would improve in the next three months.