The Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission (LSWRC) on Thursday signed a major Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a leading global organisation that is focused on water and Sanitation, WaterAid International.
Speaking at the brief but impactful signing ceremony held at the Conference Room of Lagos State Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, Alausa, Ikeja, the Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Tunji Bello said the collaboration was a significant milestone for the state government in the efforts to ensure clean and safe water for residents.
“This is a historic occasion for us in Lagos and I must say that we are very happy. We have a saying here in Africa that he who provides water provides life. This partnership is a welcome development that will go a long way to enhance access to clean and safe water for residents”, Bello said.
He recalled the strategic decision of the present administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, upon inception, to merge Water Services with the Ministry of the Environment for proper coordination and effective service delivery, adding that the latest partnership with WaterAid would greatly help to improve capacity development and regulatory framework.
According to him, “This partnership is more than necessary now and we welcome it, and let me assure that whatever support that is necessary to ensure the success of the collaboration will be provided”.
Earlier in her opening remarks, Executive Secretary of LSWRC, Mrs. Funke Adepoju said it was gratifying that the partnership with WaterAid had finally been consummated through the signing of the MoU.
In her words, “We have waited and looked forward to this day and we are only grateful that it is finally here and the collaboration between the Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission and WaterAid has become a reality”.
“The value of clean and safe water, delivered safe and healthy, at the right price, quality and quantity cannot be underestimated. The giant strides of WaterAid in advocacy initiatives on the expansion of sustainable water, sanitation and hygiene services in at-risk communities around Nigeria can only be appreciated. We thank you for this, she added
Also speaking, Country Director, WaterAid Nigeria, Evelyn Mere remarked that with the partnership, WaterAid and LSWRC are set to make a big difference towards changing the lives of people for good.
She said “WaterAid recognises that strong partnerships are central to achieving our goals and are very delighted to deepen this partnership with the Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission. We look forward to working with the Commission to enable them to effectively regulate the water sector and guarantee qualitative water supply services in the Centre of Excellence”.
“We believe that such a partnership is timely and necessary to generate the needed momentum in fulfilling our mandates to the people. Together, we are set to make a big difference through our collective efforts in changing the lives of people for good, by providing access to sustained water supply services”, she disclosed.
Others who participated in the hybrid signing ceremony which was physically and virtually attended include the Permanent Secretary, Office of Environmental Services, Mrs. Belinda Odeneye; Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Lekan Shodeinde, represented by a Director in the Office, Mrs. Lanke Helen Taiwo; while the team from WaterAid included WaterAid Global Director, Rub Fuller; Global Water Advisor, John Garett and Head WASH, Mr. Adebayo Alao, among others.
Essentially, the partnership between LSWRC and WaterAid is designed to provide the relevant knowledge needed to strengthen the Commission’s capacity to deliver on its mandate of regulating water supply and waste management services.
It will also contribute to the expansion of access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) in the State, thereby advancing efforts towards realising Sustainable Development Goal Six and providing clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene for everyone in a sustainable manner.