By Benjamin Awua, Jalingo
The Taraba State government on Saturday said it has concluded arrangements to deploy water tankers to all the 16 local government areas to supply water to the people of the state in the event of total shut down over COVID-19 pandemic.
The General Manager, Taraba State Water Supply and Sewerage Company, Engr. Buba Siem, who is also the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Water Resources, disclosed this at a parley with journalists in Jalingo, organised by the Taraba Youth Progressives Association, TYPA, a non-governmental organisation, adding that government was considering the decision to address the plight of the people, especially in this period of water scarcity as well as Coronavirus pandemic.
He said, “This was part of the decision taken recently during a stakeholders’ meeting on how to respond to a total shutdown should the virus get to the state.
“A technical committee has been put in place to address the concern of stakeholders and I can assure you that this decision is already on the table because people will need more water when they are forced to stay at home.”
Siem commended the magnanimity of USAID/E-WASH in the water sector in the state, adding that a lot has been achieved in the water sector through the timely intervention of the two organisations.
He announced that 29 sanitation facilities have been put in place so far to checkmate open defecation and called on the public to make good use of the toilet facilities and other infrastructure for a healthy society.
Similarly, Julius Butu, Director, Taraba State Environmental Protection Agency, TEPA, on his part, said efforts were ongoing to ensure environmental cleanliness in order to mitigate the spread of airborne diseases.
He said, “The Ministry of Environment will unbundle waste management to ensure that private sector comes in to help in enlightening the people about waste management as government alone can not effectively manage waste given the increase growth in the population.”
Also speaking, Boniface Koson, the CEO of Taraba Youth Progressives Association, TYPA, said the media parley was aimed at tracking progress being made by the state in terms of water supply and sanitation especially at this time that people were being advised to stay at home for fear of COVID-19.
CompassNG reports that the Taraba State government has set up a technical committee on COVID-19 to ensure public safety as COVID-19 is ravaging world communities.