By NBF News

THE Minister of Water Resources, Chief Obadiah Ando, has urged the managing directors of River Basin Development Authorities (RBDAs), to develop activities that would generate internal revenue for the Federal Government.

Ando made the call at the inauguration of new management teams of the 12 RBDAs on Tuesday, in Abuja.

He said that President Goodluck Jonathan had directed the restructuring of the RBDAs to serve as a vehicle for rural transformation, enhancement of development, as well as wealth creation in the country.

'In keeping with this priority, and the President's directive that the water sector should contribute maximally towards in-power generation, food production and food self-sufficiency, a blueprint has been developed.

'The blueprint was developed to meet the short, medium and long term expectations as enunciated by Mr President, in a Road Map for water resources development in the country,'' he said.

The minister urged them to implement the Road Map to ensure that Nigeria fully exploits the nation's water resources potential to attain the MDG targets, through effective service delivery.

He assured the team of the ministry's assistance in policy guidance and effective supervision.

Ando noted that the ministry took cognizance of several internal administrative problems in the basins, with a view to solving them and advised them to collaborate with their state commissioners in project implementation.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr Godknows Igali, told the chief executives that their appointment aimed at ensuring consistent policy direction.

He stressed the need to initiate activities that would generate revenue to support the Federal Government's activities.

Responding, on behalf of his colleagues, Alhaji Sanusi Abdullahi, the Managing Director, Hadejia Jama'are RBDA, promised that the Road Map would be implemented to ensure effective management of water resources in the country.

Abdullahi solicited the Federal Government's support to enable the RBDAs to address the challenges in the basins.

He also called for the support of the staff of the basins and other stakeholders to ensure effective service delivery.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the RDBAs were established in 1976 to ensure a nationwide systematic and consistent programme of integrated water resources development.

NAN reports that that the minister presented a copy of the Road Map to each of the newly appointed managing directors to guide their operations.