Gombe Government tackles erosion challenges—Official
The Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project (NEWMAP) has restated the commitment of the Gombe State government to address over 200 active gully erosion sites in the state.
Dr. Sani Jauro, the Gombe State project coordinator of NEWMAP, stated this during the official taking over of the completed 7.5-kilometre gully erosion project by the Gombe State government on Friday.
The erosion site, which consists of three communities that include the State University (GSU), Malam-Inna, and Kagarawal, was awarded to Triacta Nigeria Limited in December 2020 at a contract sum of over N2.9 billion.
Jauro said that Gombe was one of the states bedevilled by gully erosion, as there were no less than 200 active gully erosion sites across the state.
He said that the intervention that helped address the GSU erosion challenge was part of efforts to address all the challenges of environmental degradation in the state.
He stated that Gov. Inuwa Yahaya of Gombe State was concerned about the environmental challenges and had shown the will to address them through various environmental initiatives being implemented.
“We have been given approval to start addressing about two gully erosions that are also life-threatening, and a lot of other gully erosion projects will follow suit.
“The two projects under the Agro-Climate Resilience in Semi-Arid Landscapes (ACReSAL) programme would consolidate the government’s efforts in tackling erosion threats in the state,” he said.
He claimed that the GSU erosion site was one of the five projects approved by NEWMAP for implementation under the World Bank projects that NEWMAP was to carry out in the state.
He said that the 7.5-kilometre GSU project, since its implementation, has protected the lives and livelihoods of many communities that have benefited from it.
He said based on the quality of work done at the GSU erosion site, the project had been projected to serve the communities for about 50 years.
Jauro pledged the state government’s commitment to ensure full ownership and maintenance of the project after taking it over from Triacta Nigeria Limited.
Speaking earlier, Mr. Murtala Salisu, the Director of Physical Planning and Development at GSU, commended the state government, the World Bank, and all stakeholders for the intervention.
Salisu said the intervention had saved the tertiary institution billions of naira in infrastructure that would have been lost to gully erosion.
He said the erosion before now had divided the university into two and was about washing away critical infrastructure like the male students’ hostel worth N3 billion and other buildings.
According to him, the completion of the project has brought succour to both the school management and the students, and “we can now heave a sigh of relief, thanks to Gov. Yahaha’s administration intervention.”
On his part, Mr. Emiran Khan, Project Engineer for Triacta Nigeria Limited, assured that the project was done to specification with quality work for the benefit of the good people of the state.
While speaking, Mr. Charles Sharah, the Director of the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) in charge of the North-East Zone, appealed to residents of Gombe State to desist from dumping waste in drainages.
Sharah said the attitude of dumping waste in drainages and blocking water channels had helped worsen the impact of erosion and flooding in the state.