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SERAP Kicks Against Water Resources Bill




Ganiyat Ganiyu

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, has kicked against a bill seeking to regulate water resources in the country. 

The National Water Resources Bill which was rejected in 2018 was reintroduced by President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in July 2020.

The bill seeks to bring all water resources– both surface and underground, and the banks of the water sources under the control of the Federal Government.

The bill is currently awaiting passage by the National Assembly. 

Reacting to the bill, SERAP in a statement on Friday called on the National Assembly to immediate the drop the bill.

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The statement read, “We call on the leadership of @nassnigeria to immediately drop the illegal Water Resources 2020, which requires Nigerians to obtain a permit before sinking a borehole in their homes.

“We’ll challenge this illegality in court should the bill ever be passed into law.

“The bill also states, among others, that “the use of water shall be subject to licencing provisions”. The licence can be withdrawn on flimsy grounds.

SERAP alleged that the National Assembly is pushing to take away Nigerians’ fundamental human right to clean water rather than addressing severe water crisis and improving access of Nigerians to safe water for drinking and hygiene.

“Yet, Nigeria has ratified numerous human rights treaties that contain obligations related to water and sanitation, including the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights,” the statement added.

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