Suleiman Adamu, the Minister of Water Resources has set up a seven man committee charged with the responsibility of developing a blueprint for the transformation of the country’s 12 River Basin Development Authorities (RBDAs).
Speaking during the inauguration of the committee in Abuja, the capital city of Nigeria, Adamu regrettably mentioned that nothing has been achieved by RBDAs since it was established in 1976. The minister blamed the lack of achievement on constant changing and reversal of policies in the country.
Adamu also mentioned that RBDA has witnessed a lot of changes not just in its mission but also in manpower settings and organization structure. As he observed, RBDA lacks the required legal instruments to operate effectively. These issues prevented RBDAs from fulfilling its mandate since it was inaugurated, the minister said.
Over the years, as observed by the minister, RBDAs throughout the country have constructed a total of 148 dams. The reservoir capacity of all the dams is 9.8 billion cubic meters which according to the minister is mainly used for the purposes of irrigation and water supply.
The minister was not happy that out of the 3.1 million hectares of irrigable land in the country, only 15 percent of them has suitable equipment for all-year-round farming in the country.
Continuing in his speech, Adamu listed the challenges of RBDAs which include the use of outdated plant and equipment, lacking of maintenance, operation challenges and lack of fund which results in investment gaps and other challenges already mentioned.,