BY JULIET NONYE
The Sustainable Urban and Rural Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (SUREWASH), Kaduna Implementation unit, has promised portable drinking water and sanitation services to 7.5 million residents of the State.
The programme’s Social Safeguard Consultant, Mr Leonell Echa who stated this on Tuesday at the opening of a two-day training and inauguration of Grievance Redress Committees (GRCs), in Kaduna explained that a total of 6.1 million people would be provided with clean drinking water services, while 1.4 million would be provided with improved sanitation services through the World Bank-supported programme.
According to him, 2,000 schools and healthcare facilities would be provided with improved Water Sanitation and Hygiene facilities, and would also support 500 communities to attain Open Defecation Free status.
He added that the objective of the programme was to increase access to WASH services and strengthen sectoral institutions in seven pilot states in the country.
He identified the benefiting states to included; Kaduna, Delta, Ekiti, Gombe, Imo, Katsina and Plateau.
“The SUREWASH programme was designed to enact necessary policy reforms and enhance the capacity of institutions required for effective and sustainable service delivery in urban and rural areas, as well as small towns.
“This includes development of priority infrastructure to improve water supply and WASH infrastructure in institutions such as schools and healthcare facilities as well as markets and motor packs,” he said.
The Project Coordinator in the state, Mr Esau Ambinjah, explained that the project was designed to eradicate water, sanitation and hygiene related diseases in the state.
Ambinjah said that the programme was being piloted in six out of the 23 local government areas (LGAs), of Soba, Sabon Gari, Chikun, Igabi, Jema’a and Jaba in the state.
He explained that the benefiting LGAS were selected after declaration of interest and adjudged to be the best among the other LGAs.
He added that the training was part of efforts to mobilise critical stakeholders and community members towards success of the programme.
A Social and Gender Officer, Mrs Jummai Ibrahim said that the objectives of the programme was to train stakeholders in the six benefiting LGAs on GRCs, and inaugurate same at that level.
Ibrahim added that the training was also organised to deliberate on gender perspectives and Gender-Based Violence that may arise at the course of the implementation of the programme.
She added that at the end of the training the GRCs, designed to resolve issues on the spot in a fair, effective and credible manner, would be inaugurated in the six benefiting LGAs.
“The GRCs will be providing a voice for beneficiaries of the project, resolving environmental and social related complaints, reducing the likelihood of escalation of grievances and promote “do no harm”.