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Journal of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development

POTABLE WATER AND NATIONAL WATER POLICY IN NIGERIA (A historical synthesis, pitfalls and the way forward)

*Enyidi Uchechukwu D

*Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Management, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike Umuahia, Abia State Nigeria.

Accepted 14 July, 2017.

Citation: Uchechukwu Enyidi (2017). POTABLE WATER AND NATIONAL WATER POLICY IN NIGERIA (A historical synthesis, pitfalls and the way forward). Journal of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, 3(2): 190-202.

Copyright: © 2017 Enyidi. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.


Nigeria is divided into three by rivers Niger and Benue. There are many rivers, streams and lakes in Nigeria. Inspite of abundant water resources in Nigeria, 75% of Nigerians do not have access to safe drinking or domestic water.  A number of agencies are vested with responsibility of providing and managing Nigeria’s water resources. The Federal Government established the Ministry of Water Resources which is responsible for drafting current national water policy for the nation. The MWR also oversee nation’s water resources via smaller regulatory agencies under it like the River Basin Development Authority (RBDA) and National Water Research Institute (NWRI). RBDA is in-charge of irrigation and agro water provisions. RBDA is also in charge of ground water management. The ministry of water resources also has the Nigerian Hydrological Services Agencies (NIHSA) set up to provide services required for assessment of the nation’s surface and groundwater resources. There are overlapping and conflicting roles among Federal Government organs like RBDA, NIHSA, Federal Environmental Protection Agency, Ministry of Environment, Standard Organization of Nigeria and National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control. These arrangements functioned with frictions but have largely failed in proffering; working national water policy and potable water for Nigerians.

Key Words: Potable water, Nigeria river basin, Water policy, Nigeria standard organization, Water resources, Nigerian water resources, Federal Ministry of Water Resources