Environmental right advocacy group in Nigeria, Environmental Right Action/Friends of the earth Nigeria, ERA/FOEN, on 19th of April 2016 claimed that over 18 million Lagos residents had no daily to clean and safe water, warning it might expose residents to water-borne disease. One of the troubling paradoxes of life in Lagos state is that social infrastructure development cannot match the pace of population expansion. In no area is this more apparent than in the provision of potable water. The Lagos State House of Assembly took cognisance of this at its plenary two months ago, lamenting the water crisis Lagosians are contending with. The Akinwunmi Ambode administration needs to provide a definitive solution soon, to stave off an outbreak of pestilence.
Recurring water shortages affecting most part of the state from Shomolu to Bariga, Epe to Badagry, Isolo to Amuwo-Odofin and recently Surulere, residents are undertaking desperate search for water to meet their domestic needs. The crisis is deep-rooted. In spite of some effort of the former administrations, it has been so for decades.
The Lagos state water corporation, charged with supplying potable water, cannot cope According to the corporation, which runs over 38 water facilities; the 21 million citizens require 540 million gallons per day. But, at best it can only provide 210mgd. This is a huge shortfall, considering the fact that Lagos is practically sitting on water.
The water situation deteriorated lately when the country witnessed the disruption of gas supply to power plants due to attacks by militants in the Niger Delta. However, the shortages forced the LSWC to come up with a 10-year projection to grow supply from the current capacity to 745mgd by December 2020.
This is a huge challenge since 2020 is just four years away. As a result, Lagos residents spend a fortune on unsafe water, many residents have to wake up early in search for water, causing disruption to family life education and work, in a potential megacity this is unacceptable.
The impact is evident in the preventable health issues confronting the populace. Hygiene and sanitation, two critical factors in human health, are undermined. This is corroborated by the World Health Organization, which says, “Contaminated water and poor sanitation are linked to transmission of diseases such as cholera, diarrhoea, dysentery, hepatitis A, typhoid and polio.”