By Esther Olatunde
Common knowledge states that “Water is life” therefore governments have the responsibility and should be dedicated to the provision of safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene. An enormous increase in the output of sanitized water is required from the water sector and although concerted efforts have been shown through the development of policies and various guidelines from the Federal ministry of Water Resources in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Environment, these efforts are impeded by poor planning, poor implementation and lack of funding of the water sanitization programs proposed.
The report of WHO-UNICEF’S Joint Monitoring Program (JMP), launched in 2010 says 42% of the population in Nigeria has no access to improved drinking water, accounting for nearly 20% of all those without access in Africa as a whole
The National target for Water Supply delivery has not met its objective of distributing sufficient surface and ground water supplies. Consequently there have been scarcities in some areas, leading residents to find water from alternative sources which are usually contaminated and aid diarrheal deaths in over 150,000 children under the age of 5 annually
More so, rural water supply projects in most parts of Nigeria are dominated by the provision of water through fitted boreholes which are commonly hand-dug wells. As a result, growing settlements which have little or no funds to embark on this familiar project may have to result to watersheds that have been degraded and polluted.
Though some resources are being allocated to water, these are still inadequate and there is no sanitation budget. Projects are usually top down without the participation of stake holders needed for sustainability.
BGV LIMITED, a private sector firm has developed a simple solution for the provision of safe drinking water at little cost to the communities and their sponsors.
Managing Director of BGV Limited Iyadunni Gbadebo (Mrs.) states that “the importance of clean accessible water cannot be over emphasized and this is a great challenge faced by Nigerians in all classes. To the lower class, options do not exist and to the middle class the recurring cost of getting clean safe water is just unsustainable. Access to clean safe water should not be a luxury but a fundamental right”.
While we cannot single-handedly solve all of Nigeria’s water issues, BGV Limited has taken steps to ensure that safe, clean water is no longer a luxury reserved for the elite few but also available to the common man in Nigeria through strategic partnerships with corporate organizations using the Meckow Aquapur and our “Adopt-A-Community” project model.
Adopt a Community in Nigeria – “Clean Water Fresh Hope”, is a potable water project developed by BGV Limited. It aims to partner with Governments, NGO’s, Corporate Organizations and Individuals (Philanthropists), to improve access to potable water in communities, and provide an easy, cost effective means of accessing safe and clean drinking water using the MECKOW AQUAPUR.
To this end, BGV LIMITED in conjunction with their partners MECKOW INTERNATIONAL is introducing a unique water purification system call MECKOW AQUAPUR. It was invented by research scientist Dr. Leighton James and can be used for treating non-saline water from surface (Ponds, Lakes and reservoirs) as well as ground water sources (wells, bore holes and springs).
With the main constraint of the developing world being a lack of electricity, Meckow International has developed a patented water purification system which requires no electricity for its purification process. The Meckow Aquapur is an innovative water filtration system that has outstanding capabilities. It transforms contaminated fresh water from almost any source, into safe drinking water with each unit producing up to 1000 litres per hour of safe drinking water for up to 2000 people per day. It is easy to operate, has a working life cycle of 25 years and the generated water is free of heavy metals and microbiological contaminants.
The Meckow Aquapur is fully sustainable due to its very low running costs of just 0.004 cents per litre (dependent on water turbidity). It is designed to be easily maintained with its simple patented filtration and back washing system. This as well as its simple operating system and life expectancy of up to twenty five years, makes the Meckow Aquapur a truly unique product.
The Meckow Aquapur has been certified in a number of countries around the world having met the water safety requirements of their respective Health and Safety Bureaus. We are also proud winners of a ‘UN Habitat Business Award’, for outstanding contributions to improving the quality of life for people in the developing world.
In less than one year, since the launch of the project in Nigeria, we have partnered with Guinness Nigeria (Diageo) to provide clean and safe drinking water to Awba Ofemili Village in Akwa North, Anambra State; a remote farming and fishing village with a population of approximately 3000 inhabitants with no access to clean drinking water and whose only source of water was a dirty and highly contaminated river they washed, bathed, drank and cooked from.
We are in partnership with the Sail Harbour Foundation (UK) for an integrated approach to providing clean and safe drinking water to communities in Badagry, Lagos State; we are also working on launching into the Niger Delta regions with the help of some corporate organizations and are in discussions to launch several clean water projects in selected rural communities in West African countries. Already projects have been carried out in Angola, South Africa, India, Kenya, Mexico and Zimbabwe and certainly will surmount the seeming insurmountable problem of providing clean water to most rural areas and even new communities in urban areas.
One of the ways BGV LIMITED intends on driving home the need to buy into this new device which promises to hydrate our poorer communities in Nigeria, is through the “Adopt-A-Community” – Clean Water Fresh Hope initiative which we hope will be championed by both the private and public sectors that have CSR objectives and aim to improve the standard of living in poorer communities.
We need change in Nigeria; let’s start by providing clean safe drinking water.
Esther Olatunde works for BGV Limited, the exclusive partner of Meckow International in West Africa firstname.lastname@example.org