The Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), Bwari branch, has donated a solar powered borehole worth about N5 million to Gaba community, Bwari Area Council, Abuja, FCT.
The Chairman, NSE Bwari branch, Engr. (Dr) Halima Adediran, said during the inauguration of the borehole on Tuesday that the borehole was donated to the community to redeem a pledge.
“Actually, the inauguration of the solar power project you are seeing today is one of the promises I made when I took over the leadership of the society.
“When I took over in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic last year, I indentified one of the challenges that needed to be solved was to bring engineering solutions to mitigate the spread of the pademic.
“So, we immediately sprang into action and carried out a study of some communities and we found out that there were two densely populated communities, which are Gaba and Igu that do not have portable water,” she said.
She explained that the project was initially estimated to cost N2.5 million in 2020, but due to high cost of materials, about N5 million was spent on it.
“The only water source available to them is a stream and we know that makes them prone to water borne diseases.
“So, we had to quickly join forces together and sink a borehole for them, not just a borehole but a solar powered borehole so that they don’t incur electric bill,” she said.
Adediran said two members of the Bwari branch sponsored the project; calling on well meaning Nigerians and other professional bodies to support villages and communities in Abuja.
She promised that the society would reach out to other communities in need of water among others, adding that NSE would have constructed more boreholes for Gaba community but was handicapped by funds.
The Minister of State, FCT, Dr Ramatu Aliyu, observed that the whole country was ravaged by the out break of cholera, especially in the FCT.
Aliu, represented by Dr Mohammed Dan-Hassan, Executive Director, FCT Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (FCT RUWASSA), said at the last count, the FCT had recorded over 71 deaths from the disease.
“FCT did not record such fatality rate during COVID like what we just had in cholera outbreak and billions were spent in trying to arrest the ravishing effect of COVID-19 and cholera.
“Cholera is usually contacted from unsafe water resources and food and one of the ways to curtail the menace is to provide safe drinking water.
“To the glory of God, our own engineers who are problem solvers noticed and identified the need to solve a problem in this community.
“We are making efforts to ensure every household in every community in FCT has a toilet to stop open defecation,” said the minister.
Speaking at the event, President of NSE, Babagana Mohammed, said the project was a promise made and fulfilled, urging the community to ensure the sustainability of the project.
Also, Mr Mohammed Babakobi, Director, Stadia and facilities, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sport, tasked the community to use the borehole effectively.
The Gaba Youth Leader, Mr Francis Musa, appreciated NSE Bwari branch for providing portable water, which indicated the begining of turn around for the community.
Musa said the community had a long way to go, as it needed youth empowerment programme, modern senior secondary schools, hospital facilities, among others.
Also, Chairman, Project Implementation Committee, NSE Bwari branch, Engr Ijirotimi Olanrewaju, during his vote of thanks, said the committe faced many hiccups in actualising the project