C/River lauded for $3m commitment to water, sanitation

                           Ayade

The Cross River State government has been commended for its commitment on an annual $3 million investment in the water, sanitation and hygiene sector.

In a communiqué at the end of the State’s WASH Steering Committee one-day advocacy meeting with the media, government and development partners to review the status of Water and Sanitation Hygiene, in Calabar, the state government was also urged to commence practical modalities for the implementation of the pledge, which was made at the Mandela 100 Global Citizen Festival in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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The programmes under review at the meeting were the EU/UNICEF-WSSSP II, the Global Sanitation Funded-RUSHPIN Programme; USAID and Coca Cola Foundation; Water and Development Alliance (WADA) project; and the UKAid sanitation project with United Purpose

The communiqué signed by the Commissioner, Ministry of Water Resources, Ntufam Gabe Oji, and 12 others read in part, however observed that there are key outstanding gaps requiring urgent government attention in the four major water and sanitation programmes in the state that are coming to an end in 2019: the EU/UNICEF-WSSSP II, the Global Sanitation Funded-RUSHPIN Programme, USAID and Coca Cola Foundation; Water and Development Alliance (WADA) project, and the UKAid sanitation project with United Purpose.

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The meeting also called on the state government to release and make available agreed operational counterpart funds to the EU-UNICEF programmes and Global Sanitation Fund-RUSHPIN programmes.

They noted that there are future investment opportunities for Cross River State in view of the State of Emergency for the WASH sector declared by the Federal Government and the 30 billion naira WASH fund.

The participants applauded the state for being successful in having three out of Nigeria’s five Open Defecation Free (ODF) areas, and called on the state government to scale up the successful models of sanitation applied in the three ODF local governments’ areas of Obanliku, Yakurr and Bekwarra.

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They also agreed that it is pertinent to have a comprehensive brief on the state of water supply and sanitation presented to the state governor and his executive council.

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