ShareAs a way of giving back to the society in which it operates, Guinness Nigeria Plc celebrated World Water Day with the inauguration of a mini waterworks comprising boreholes, overhead storage tanks, water treatment plant and reticulation network in its ‘Water of Life’ project at Jebba, Kwara State.
Speaking at the inauguration, the Governor of Kwara State, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, who was represented by the Commissioner for Water Resources, Mr Abubakar Garba-Idris, praised Guinness Nigeria Plc for meeting the need of rural communities through sustainable potable water supply.
“Guinness Nigeria’s kind gesture will, to a great extent, improve the significant ‘water gap’ visible in the lives of the inhabitants of Jebba,” he said.
According to Ahmed, the problems caused by drinking unsafe water are so enormous that government alone cannot solve them.
He urged other corporate and non-governmental organisations to emulate Guinness’ gesture in improving the welfare of Nigerians.
“To succeed in the socio-economic development of Nigeria, the private sector and government must work together,” he said.
Mike Onuoha, Head, Public Policy, Guinness Nigeria, who handed the facility to the community, explained that the company’s determination to provide potable water to communities across Nigeria is one of its principal objectives.
“Clean potable water is of immense importance to the workings of the human body and healthy living as it plays key role in the prevention of diseases,” he stated.
The event was attended by the Oba of Jebba, Oba Alhaji Abuldkadir Alabi Adebara and indigenes of the community, as well as directors from Kwara State Ministry of Water Resources and the Moro council chairman.
Oba Adebara stated that residents of Jebba had, in recent times, suffered water scarcity.
He urged non-governmental organisations to emulate the good gesture of Guinness Nigeria in providing social amenities that would improve the livelihood of Nigerians, especially those in rural areas.
Also speaking at the event, Ngozi Ife Anene, Corporate Communications Manager, Guinness Nigeria, said the Water of Life project was part of the company’s contribution to resolving the global concern of accessibility to safe water in line with the UN Millennium Development Goals to “halve the number of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and sanitation by 2015.”
Other states that have benefitted from the Guinness Water of Life project are Ekiti, Oyo, Abia, Anambra, Benue, Ondo, and Edo.
Guinness Nigeria has signed a partnership deal with other organisations to launch Safe Water for Africa (SWA).
The partnership aims to invest over $20 million to provide sustainable access to safe drinking water for five million people by 2015, beginning with 43 communities and 430,000 beneficiaries in Nigeria, Ghana and Liberia this year.