The Kogi state government in its 2020 budget allocated the sum of N300 million for a water project in Idah, Ajaka, and other communities, a project called “Eastern Water Project Scheme”.
Other communities the government said the water project will be carried out are Ejule, Odu-Okpakili, Ankpa, Agaliga, Imane, Abejukolo, Anyigba, and Oguma.
Checks by MAWA Foundation show despite the allocation of N300 million by the Kogi State government, no single water project was carried out in the communities.
Mr. Israel Omale, a resident of Ajaka, told the MAWA Foundation team that there is no single water project in the community, pointing out that what sustains residents is water from a borehole. He added that residents buy 20 litres of water N20 from the owners of a borehole and other water vendors.
Mr. Onu Emmanuel, a resident of Ejule, told MAWA Foundation that there is no trace of any water project in their community. Onu added that residents buy water from water vendors while those who cannot afford to buy opt for well and stream as a source of getting water.
Mrs. Comfort Ogbe, a resident of Imane, told the MAWA Foundation team who visited the community that there is no water project in her community. She, however, added that the only source of potable water in the community is boreholes dug by some individuals in their homes, while residents buy from them at N20 per 20 litres.
Mr. Ameh Joseph, a resident of Anka, told MAWA Foundation that no such water project exists in his community. Ameh, who claims to be a civil servant but refuses to disclose his office, accused the Kogi state government of siphoning monies meant for development and making the poor to undergo huge suffering.
Mr. Idoko Paul, a resident of Abejukolo, told the MAWA Foundation team who visited the community that they are not aware of any water project, added that there is no such project in their area.
“Nobody came here to do any water project, thank God you came here to see things for yourselves, do not believe their lies, they gave us no water, Idoko told the MAWA team
Some of the residents, who spoke to the MAWA Foundation team at Anyigba, said there is no such project in their community. One of the residents, a Nurse, who did not want her name mentioned, told MAWA Foundation that residents in her area depend on borehole as their major source of water while pointing out that there is no water project in their community.
A senior official from the Kogi State Ministry of Water Resources told MAWA Foundation that he is not aware government is carrying out such water projects in the communities.
He, however, directed MAWA Foundation to contact the Water Resources spokesperson for clarification.
MAWA Foundation could not immediately reach out to the spokesperson for a response.
Note: Picture not real, used for an illustration.