ABUJA -The Minster of Water Resources, Mrs. Sarah Ochekpe, says she has zero tolerance for badly implemented and poorly supervised water projects in the country.
Ochekpe made the declaration at the Mid-Year Retreat Workshop on Service Delivery and Projects Implementation organised by the Federal Ministry of Water Resources in Abuja recently.
She said directorate officers of the ministry, parastatals and the project implementation officers would be held responsible for poorly implemented projects.
Ochekpe further called for the proper utilisation of available resources to ensure development as the water infrastructures were capital intensive with low funding from the line budget.
“We will not tolerate projects that are poorly designed and conceptualised, henceforth project implementation officers will be fully held responsible for badly implemented projects.
“The water infrastructures is highly capital intensive and with dwindling funding from line of budgetary allocation any misappropriation of funds for projects will attract sanctions accordingly.” She said.
She said the workshop was put together to create a platform for consultative and interactive discussions among stakeholders on ways to address issues on civil society and change management in the water sector.
Ochekpe mentioned other issues to be addressed as follows; project implementation, Transformation Agenda, Vision 20:2020, enhancing efficiency and productivity in water sector projects.
Others include: integrity and professionalism in prosecution of projects, transparency and integrity of projects execution, budgeting and planning for project continuity, monitoring and evaluation for project efficiency.
The Minister of State for Works, Amb. Bashir Yuguda, identified the extension of project period, cost escalation and ineffective monitoring as factors limiting the speedy implementation of projects in the country.
“These delays in the execution of projects affect the economy, therefore, contractors, consultants, project officers and the ministry officials need to rub minds on these issues to reduce their occurrences,’’ he said.
He noted that countries like India, Brazil and South Korea, progressed in their infrastructure development programmes because they were able to overcome such challenges in their different sectors.
Yuguda also urged the ministry to explore other funding options as the different sectors of the economy, including the water sector, had limited resources from the line budget.
He stressed the need for public private partnership done in line with the guidelines of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC).
Similarly, Dr Emeka Eze, the Director-General, Bureau of Public Procurement in his presentation, urged project officers to adhere to the Public Procurement Act 2007 in processing and executing projects.
Eze explained that public disclosure of rules that apply in procurement, extensive advertising and publication of procurement procedures, were some of the ways of promoting or curbing corruption in the sector.