Water supply: Three states to benefit from $250m World Bank credit

The World Bank said it had approved a credit of $250 million from the International Development Association to help three states improve their urban water delivery.
Marie-Francoise Marie-Nelly, the World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, told the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Abuja that the states are Bauchi, Ekiti and Rivers.
Marie-Nelly urged the Nigerian Government to continue in its efforts to increase access to water supply.
According to her, the second component of the credit will also help to improve the financial and management viability of existing water utilities.
She said: “The funds will target the poor, urban population living in the state capitals and their surroundings and will benefit some two million people.
“The credit supports to the Third National Urban Water Sector Reform Project and responds to the Government of Nigeria’s goal of developing more effective mechanism for social service delivery, particularly water service.
“The funds will help rehabilitate and build the water delivery infrastructure and institutional systems needed to expand access to water supply services for people in selected cities in Bauchi, Ekiti, and Rivers States.”
Marie-Nelly said a portion of the project was performance based and would include incentives for improving the performance of the water supply institutions in the three states.
She added that past experience had shown that building water infrastructure without strengthening the capacity of the institutions responsible for managing water supply to the targeted areas did not lead to sustainable results.
“We, therefore, hope that the new strategy, which puts more emphasis on this integrated approach, will contribute to improve the health and economic well-being of the more vulnerable, particularly women and girls, who spend a lot of time fetching water,” she said.
According to Marie-Nelly, the second project component will provide technical and financial assistance to nine state governments.
She named the states as Kano, Gombe, Benue, Jigawa, Ondo, Abia, Bayelsa, Anambra, and Plateau, adding it would help prepare them for large water supply.
Marie-Nelly said that the Federal Ministry of Water Resources would also benefit from the assistance by strengthening its capacity to monitor the water sector’s performance.