Mr Magashi Bashir, Executive Director, Nigeria Integrated Water Resources Management Commission, on Tuesday, said the commission would prosecute companies operating without water use licence issued by it.
This was contained in a statement issued in Abuja by Mrs Madina Gertrude, Head of Public Relations of the commission.
Bashir said that the commission was monitoring the activities of all the companies with water licences to ensure that they were operating in line with the spirit and letters of the licence given to them.
According to him, refusal or failure to obtain the licence is a clear violation of Water Resources Act, Cap w2, LFW, 2004, adding that it constitutes an offence liable to persecution in a court of competent jurisdiction.
“Recently, the commission presented the well water contractor’s licence to 10 qualified applicants.
“The commission has so far issued about 23 water licences and many more applications are still being processed.
“The water use licence has contributed immensely to the economy through facilitation of the development of hydro-electric power generation and agricultural activities.
“The licence has also created job opportunities, thereby reducing poverty and enhancing development in the country,” he said.
Bashir expressed the commission’s commitment to ensuring that ground water resources were protected from chemical contamination released by various firms.
“Currently, we are developing a source protection plan, which will help to protect ground water sources against pollution and maintain a healthy environment,” he said.
The executive director said that the COVID-19 pandemic currently being faced by the country required effective provision of Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), adding that such efforts would help fight the virus.
He said that the commission’s objective was to regulate, protect, conserve and control water sources for equitable social-economic development.
According to him, the commission is collaborating with other ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to ensure that it achieved its mandates. (NAN)