Minister of Water Resources, Mr Suleiman Adamu, on Tuesday inaugurated a compedium of irrigation and digital dams infrastructure as part of efforts to attract more investors into the water resources sector.
Adamu, at the event in Abuja, noted that the Federal Government, through the ministry, embarked on construction of dams to ensure availability of water for all purposes.
According to him, dams are critical in the sustainable development and management of the country’s infinite water resources, noting that it would meet the demands of all water users.
He said Nigeria was one of the countries with the highest number of dams.
“Comprehensive information on the collective efforts of interventions by successive governments and private sector participation in the irrigation sector over the years has been sketchy.
“Consequently, the necessity of effective planning to transform and stimulate the sub-sector, brought about the need for a comprehensive data to properly document and harmonize all information on irrigation schemes”, he said.
The minister noted that the data provided in the compendium, would be of immense value to dam operators and owners, saying it would also attract and guide future investors.
He said that a total of 408 dams were documented in the compendium, saying they included 142 large dams, 59 medium dams and 207 small dams.
The minister said that the ministry was organising irrigation farmers into Water User Associations, as a way of strengthening and building capacities for effective operation and maintenance of relevant irrigation schemes in the country.
The consultant engaged for the project, Mr Fred Chuga, while presenting the Compendium/Digital Map of Dams in Nigeria, said a total of 428 data of dams and 323 data of irrigation schemes were available.
Chuga said the user -friendly digital maps had a windows operating system interface, to allow all states access its information.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the history of dam construction in Nigeria, is dated back to 1918, with the construction of single purpose Kwall Stream and Ngell Dams In Plateau state.
Since then, a good number of dams of various sizes and purposes had been built all over the country.