Kwara, fish farmers meet over damage to Asa Dam water equipment

By Chinyere Anyanwu

Kwara State government said on Sunday that it will this week meet with fish farmers working around the Asa Dam Waterworks over alleged persistent damage to the water equipment in the area.

The State Commissioner for Water Resources, Alhaji Wahab Femi-Agbaje, said the leadership of the ministry would meet with fish farmers to resolve the issue of damage to water equipment in the area which may disrupt water supply to the people in the Ilorin metropolis.

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The ministry alleged that the damage being done to the waterworks through the activities of the fish farmers may soon truncate water supply to most parts of the Ilorin metropolis, if not curbed.

He said, “the activities of the fish farmers over the years have affected the raw water supply to the treatment plant in Asa Dam works,” according to a statement by the Commissioner for Water Resources.

“Let it be on record that the Asa Dam reservoir is not meant for fishing activities. It is for raw water impoundment for all year round use for treatment for the people of Ilorin metropolis and surrounding settlements.

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“However, fishing activities and discharge of the effluent from these activities have been the. The effluent discharge has now reached a situation where our treatment plant could not cope with it anymore as the sedimentation tanks are loaded after the coagulation processes.

“They are collapsing due to the load on the lamina plate, the filtration sand media are blocked, thereby reducing the rate of percolation. The treatment equipment components are being damaged.

“This requires a drastic measure to save the populace of Ilorin metropolis and surrounding settlements from an erratic supply of water. So, we are having a meeting with the fish farmers to find a lasting solution to this. Public interest is paramount at all times.”

In a reaction, the Chairman of the Catfish Farmers Association in the state, Sulyman Buhari, denied the allegation that fish farmers were causing damage to water equipment, urging the government to be careful of its action and consider the economic benefits of fish farming in the state.

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