LAGOS MARKS WORLD WATER DAY WITH SPECIAL SYMPOSIUM, AWARENESS WALK

The Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission (LASWARCO) on Monday commemorated World Water Day with a special symposium and awareness walk on the need to imbibe the right disposition towards valuing water.

Speaking at the celebration held at the Conference Room of Lagos State Debt Management Office, Alausa, Ikeja, the State Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tunji Bello, represented by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mrs. Belinda Odeneye, said it was important for the people to appreciate the value of water.

His words: “Anything we have to do with the environment has to be participatory. We all have to take responsibility. Water is in short supply and human beings need to take note and we have to behave like it is in short supply also. Some people should not be wasting water because the cost of extracting it, maintaining it and making it available for the residents is high”.

“For example in terms of ethical responsibility, when you want to wash, ensure that you wash with just the adequate water that you need and when you want to dispose of water, you dispose of it in an environmentally-friendly manner. Some water can be reused immediately. Some need treatment, while others don’t. The key point is that we all have to take responsibility by valuing water the way it should be valued”, Bello said.

In her remarks, the Executive Secretary of LASWARCO, Mrs. Funke Adepoju, said March 22, 1993, has remained a significant day for water and all those in the water sector because it was set aside by the United Nations as a day to put the spotlight on the importance of freshwater and promote sustainable management of freshwater resources.

“These noble steps have continued to create the needed awareness for water and attention towards it and has grown in the last two decades”, Adepoju said.

Alluding to available statistics to the effect that 2.2 billion people still live without access to safe water, while 829,000 die each year from diarrhoea as a result of unsafe drinking water, sanitation and hand hygiene, Adepoju said it was obvious that more grounds still need to be covered towards making water accessible to all in line with Sustainable Development Goal 6.

She said, “The theme of World Water Day 2021 ‘Valuing Water’ is apt. Water is indeed life and there is no day that goes by without every one of us having to use water one way or another. So more than its face value or price, it has boundless and infinite value to us all. A resource of such incredible value must, therefore, be well managed, protected and respected”.

As part of the celebration, an awareness walk to sensitise residents on the need to value water was held in Alausa, while there was also a quiz competition for students of schools across the six educational districts in the State on the importance of water, with winners going away with laptops, educational learning tabs and cash prizes among others.

OA/TMS/OS

Ayomide Oyewole

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