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Owena Dam: ODSG awards reticulation project — Akinwalere

By Babatunde Ayedoju

After many years of abandonment by successive governments, the Owena Dam in Igbara-Oke, Ifedore Local Government area of Ondo State will soon start to pump pipe borne water to many homes in Ondo Central Senatorial District.

An indication to this was given by the State Commissioner for Water Resources, Sanitation and Hygiene, Mr Sunday Akinwalere during an interview with The Hope.

Akinwalere disclosed to The Hope that the reticulation project (laying of network of pipes) for the supply of water to households will begin very shortly.

The Commissioner who noted that litigations and economic downturn had hindered the project in the past, attributed the progress made so far to good leadership and the determination of the present administration to ensure that residents of the affected areas enjoy potable water.

He said: “Our late Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, had it in mind to pursue the matter to a logical conclusion but was called to glory, then the incumbent governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, who was part of that administration deemed it fit to continue from where his predecessor stopped.

“I traveled to Abuja to meet with our foreign partners, African Development Bank and French Development Bank. A lot of things are going on internally but we will begin to award the contract now. The reservoir is going to be refurbished. There will be pipe laying and many other projects,” he added.

 Akinwalere assured that the project would be completed within 18 months after the award of the contract.

Talking about the reservoirs to be built at the project site, the Commissioner said, “the first one will be beside the dam. That is the largest one. The one that will run through Akure and its environs is the one in lfedore local government. We are targeting 3,000 households, and at least there will be five people per household, which will not be less than 1.5 million people.

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“The one at Owena, Ondo Road will service Idanre, Ondo East, Ondo West, and Ile-Oluji. On that, we are targeting about 2,000 households or more, that is the initial target, but later on it will be increasing/expanding.”

While assuring that the project would be a huge success, Akinwalere stated that the state government had set up a steering committee to supervise it, with adequate measures to ensure that there is continuity.

His words: “We have a steering committee headed by the current Commissioner. Members are drawn from other corresponding ministries, usually their Permanent Secretaries or any other person who is trained. We have somebody from the Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning, the Ministry of Finance, and others. We also have the General Manager of Water Corporation.

“Even if the current Commissioner is redeployed, the project will continue. No matter who is redeployed, it does not affect the work because there is a project implementation manual to follow. We have also gone past the stage of legal tussles.”

He also revealed that there would be financial obligations for individuals who want to get pipes to their homes while the public ones would be free, assuring that the service fee would be very affordable.

Owena Dam: ODSG awards reticulation project — Akinwalere

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