With the rating, it is also placed among countries, which may not meet the United Nations (UN) Millennium Development Goal (MDG) in water supply to its citizens due to poor governance.
These assertions were made in Benin City, Edo State capital, at the weekend by a guest lecturer, Gabriel Okezi, at a lecture on the use and conservation of water for human development organised by the management of the Benin-Owena River Basin Development Authority.
Speaking on the theme: “Water resources management in Nigeria,” Okezi noted that the goal of water management was to make it available and affordable for all purposes to promote “good health, national welfare, food and self-sufficiency, as well as industrial growth.”
Okezie lamented that the laws on water management in the country were not being implemented, which he described as informing Nigeria’s rating as the third poorest in terms of water supply after India and China.
“The laws on water resources management are not being evolved by the Federal Ministry of Water Resources. That is the highest water authority in the country. They should give us guidelines as to how we should manage our water,” he said.
Okezie urged the Federal and state Governments to include water resources management in school curriculum.
Earlier, Managing Director of Benin-Owena River Basin Development Authority, Ajibade Luka, said the lecture was designed to discuss water resources management in Nigeria because water is critical to human development.
The Edo State Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Abdul Orho, lauded the River Basin agency for organising the event, stressing that water is a gift from God for all to manage.
Also, Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture and Water Resources, Misan Okubenji, said the importance of water to human existence cannot be over-emphasised and urged Nigerians not to pollute it.