From Sola Ojo, Kaduna
The Kaduna State Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (KADRUWASSA) has failed durability tests in Soba, Chikun and Kaura local government areas of Kaduna State where it had executed several water projects, a report by Legal Awareness for Nigeria Women (LANW) has revealed.
KADRUWASSA is responsible for supplying safe drinking water to rural communities, schools and primary health centres through the construction of handheld pump boreholes and rehabilitation of handheld and pump boreholes in communities.
This monitoring report entitled, “Results of tracking of SUBEB, RUWASSA, PHC projects in Chikun, Kaura and Soba LGAs, Kaduna State”, under the Strengthening Accountability and Transparency In Nigeria’s Education Sector (STATNES) project supported by the MacArthur Foundation, also faulted poor project execution in basic education and primary health centres.
The report showed how the RUWASSA project in Ungwan Boye, Kaura local government, only functioned for three months after it was completed.
Another RUWASSA project in Magatah, Chikun, failed to give locals safe water even when the contractor pleaded for three months to fix the borehole which had elapsed.
The experiences in Chikun are not that different from the ones in Kaura local government. The RUWASSA water projects in Kamazou, Tsauni Kura and Kudenda communities are not serving the purpose they were built.
In Soba local government, RUWASSA water projects in Turawa, Yakassai and Tashaice stopped working shortly after they were completed and handed over to the beneficiaries.
According to the executive summary of that scorecard, STATNES was aimed, among other things, to contribute to the reduction of the risk of leakages and corruption in the administration and use of UBEC funds in Kaduna State – through meaningful participation of all the diverse groups in the communities where schools and public projects are located as drivers of the tracking and engagement activities using a constructive as opposed to a confrontational approach.
‘The community monitors made use of social accountability processes driven by evidence-based advocacy nurtured by relationships built with other CSOs, Media and the demand side amplifying the voice of the people.
‘The successful implementation and high impact recorded from the previous years of the STATNES project has led to a scale up to track and monitor primary health care and Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA) projects in Kaduna State.
‘In Soba LGA, 40% of the project monitored under school projects at LEA Soba Yelwa, LEA Anguwar Yelwa Sarki, LEA Lungu and GJSS Turawa are completed but currently have issues of either collapsed classrooms, blown roof and leaking roofs, 30% of the projects are on-going at LEA Gimba, LEA Tashan Nabargi and LEA Yakassai and 30% of the projects are abandoned at LEA Turawa, LEA Model and LEA Tudun Saibu.
‘In Kaura LGA, 63.5% of the school projects monitored at GJSS Tum, LEA Zankan Moro’a, LEA Anguwar Boye, LEA Tsowai and LEA Anturung has been completed but currently have issues of cracked walls, collapsed walls, broken floors and partitioning due to lack of classes. 12.5% of the projects monitored are on-going at LEA Agban Kagoro while 25% of the monitored projects are abandoned at GJSS Tum and LEA Mai-Kaji.
‘In Chikun LGA, all the schools monitored have been completed although they have various issues ranging from a collapsed building, blown roof, leaking roof, damaged chairs and desk, falling windows and doors, no perimeter fence etc.
‘The process of monitoring was hindered due to non-access to the Bill of Quantities (BOQs) or even the contractors, some who felt the monitors had no business monitoring the projects, insecurity, non-existence of signboards, the absence of action plans from SUBEB as well as the closure of schools and MDAs due to COVID-19 pandemic,’ the report added.
The report further noted that some of the units in some agencies of Kaduna State Government appeared not to be in tune with the provision of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) and Freedom of Information (FOI) which give room for information sharing between government and citizens.
‘The Procurement and Project Monitoring (PPM) department of SUBEB, Primary Health Care and Development Board and the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA), on its part have reiterated its stance against giving citizen’s access to some relevant information.
‘This however seems to run contrary to the commitment of the State to an Open, accountable and transparent Government process under the Open Government Partnership (OGP).
‘In the light of the findings and to reduce wastage of scarce resources SUBEB is urged to put pressure on the contractors to go back to the site and complete projects which had been abandoned, effect repairs on defective projects like leaking roofs, damaged chairs and tables, detached windows and doors across the three LGAs before they are paid off.’
The report recommended that water point should be drilled during the dry season to get the correct water level while soil testing and analysis are conducted before drilling water point.
‘Conduct water suitability analysis of water points before or after drilling of boreholes to ensure water is safe for drinking purposes and incorporate training of community members to carry out borehole maintenance works in the event of faults or breakdown of the borehole instead of waiting for the government to effect repairs.’