A group has urged the government of Lagos State, under Babajide Sanwo-Olu to probe all loans and funding for existing water system and infrastructure in the state by past administrations.
The group, which listed the administrations of former governors Babatunde Fashola and Akinwunmi Ambode, however exempted that of the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, from among those to be probed.
Among other things, it said the N1.6 billion made available to the Lagos Water Corporation (LWC) in 2017 for the rehabilitation of mini and micro waterworks across the state must be probed.
The group, Environmental Rights Action/ Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/ FoEN) stated this when it organised a stakeholders’ dialogue on Saturday themed “The Lagos water crisis; setting agenda for the Sanwo-Olu administration in the water sector.”
The chairman, Board ERA/FoEN, Nnimmo Bassey, who was represented by the deputy executive director, Akinbode Oluwafemi, at the event said that access to water is a free gift by nature.
He said corporations and private interests whose only objective is to maximise profit at the expense of the people, must therefore, not be allowed to tamper with it.
Also speaking, the country director of Plan International Nigeria, Dr. Hussaini Abdu, in his keynote address at the event entitled “The Lagos Water Crisis and the Imperative for Sustainable Solutions”, harped on human right to water which according to him, entitles everyone without discrimination to sufficient, safe, acceptable, physically accessible and affordable water for personal and domestic uses.
He pointed that privatisation has largely failed across the globe and that citizens must be part of the solutions since international financial institutions have never addressed municipal challenges.
After the dialogue, the group described corruption in the water sector across the states and at the national level as massive and alarming.
While it expressed worries that those suspected of corruption were yet to be probed, it called on government to report them.