- Boreholes yet to be commissioned, says Governor
BY TIMOTHY AGBOR, OSOGBO
A group, The Osun Masterminds, has disclosed that the multi-million naira boreholes constructed by Governor Ademola Adeleke in Osun State were not functioning despite claims of completion by the government.
The Executive Director of the group, Wasiu Oyedokun-Alli, while addressing a press conference in Osogbo on Monday, said members of the civil group visited several locations of the boreholes in communities across Osun, interacted with residents and discovered that the boreholes stopped dispensing water immediately they were installed by the state government.
The borehole project was part of the achievements the state government announced when Governor Adeleke marked 100 days in office, recently.
According to Oyedokun-Alli, “You will recall that at the time the State Government decided to embark on the borehole projects it executed in all the wards in the state, we criticized the step and advised that government instead channels its energy towards revitalizing the moribund water supply schemes in the state. For reasons of political expediency, particularly celebration of 100 days in office, government decided to implement the policy.
“As responsible citizens who are equal stakeholders in the Osun project, we visited numerous locations of these boreholes and discovered that, although government has informed the state’s people through several press releases and interviews that the boreholes were now completed and in service, majority of the boreholes are still not functional.
“We visited several wards across the state and interacted with many locals in those areas visited. Our findings revealed that upon completion of most, if not all of the boreholes, they did not work beyond the day the installed pumping machines were tested.
“In some cases, no provision was made for electrical connection that will power the boreholes, while in some cases poor arrangements that cannot serve a long term purpose were made. We also found that a lot of the boreholes had truly been completed way before the Holy month of Ramadan commenced, but are still not in service till this present day.
“We should cite some close examples, for the records. The Governor can even choose to commission an enquiry into the current state of the boreholes. We physically visited the boreholes in Ward 5 Olorunda LG, Wards 2, 6 and 14 of Osogbo Local Government, among many others across the state.
“The stories were the same all over the state. Boreholes were sunk and installed. The installations were tested, but since that day, more than two months ago, no drop of water has come out of the boreholes the Osun State Government spent hundreds of millions to construct. Taps have not even been installed at a lot of the locations and the contractors have not resurfaced since they left site. We have pictorial evidence to back our claims,” he added.
Reacting, the state government clarified that the statewide borehole projects were not functional because they were yet to be equipped with generating sets before commissioning for public use.
A statement issued on Monday by Olawale Rasheed, the spokesperson to Governor Adeleke, reads, “In specific terms, the government dispels in strong terms insinuations in some partisan quarters that the borehole water project has failed. The project is successful in many ways as the government is in the process of purchasing generating sets to power them. Pending the completion of the powering process and the official commissioning, many communities are making use of the facilities to meet their water needs.
“A 30-local government survey plus the area office would show that contrary to reports, the water project has not failed and a check with the relevant government offices would have corrected misinformation being peddled around. As at today, our people at the local levels are enjoying these boreholes even before it was fully commissioned.”