Kashim­billa mul­ti­pur­pose dam at­tains wa­ter di­ver­sion stage

Daily Trust - - ENVIRONMENT - By Chidimma C. Okeke

The Kashim­billa mul­ti­pur­pose buf­fer dam in Taraba State has reached its com­ple­tion stage with the di­ver­sion of wa­ter into the dam to en­able the con­trac­tors work at the river chan­nel.

The up­stream and down­stream of River Katsina Ala were blocked at the ini­tial stage of the work to al­low pas­sage of wa­ter through other chan­nels.

The project con­sul­tant Engr. Musa Ayan­wola while brief­ing of­fi­cials of the Min­istry of Wa­ter Re­sources at the site, de­scribed wa­ter di­ver­sion as the crit­i­cal as­pect of dam con­struc­tion.

He said the ex­er­cise would en­hance prompt com­ple­tion of the project as it would al­low en­gi­neers to work within the river chan­nel. “With­out good di­ver­sion all the work that we are go­ing to do in the river chan­nel can be washed away,” he said, adding that the ex­er­cise is cru­cial to the com­ple­tion of the project.

He ex­plained: “In dam con­struc­tion, we have two ma­jor di­ver­sions, this one that we are about to do now is to en­able us work within the river chan­nel, by the grace of God at the end to the con­struc­tion within the river chan­nel the dam will al­most be ready for clo­sure, that will be the sec­ond di­ver­sion.”

In her ad­dress, the Min­is­ter of Wa­ter Re­sources Mrs. Sarah Reng Ochekpe re­it­er­ated the re­solve of the ad­min­is­tra­tion to en­sur­ing that the dam is com­pleted and put to use, adding that when com­pleted, it would pro­vide wa­ter to Takum Lo­cal Govern­ment Area and its en­vi­rons with ad­den­dum to its abil­ity to ir­ri­gate about 2, 000 hectares of land.

The min­is­ter, who was rep­re­sented by the Di­rec­tor Ir­ri­ga­tion and Drainage, Engr. Joe Kwanashie, said the dam, de­signed to con­tain 500 mil­lion cu­bic me­tres of wa­ter, would fore­stall the prob­a­ble emis­sion of poi­sonous gas and flood­ing from Lake Nyos in Camer­oun should it break down.

She said the dam would add 40 megawatts to the na­tional grid through its hy­dropower com­po­nent this year.

“The dam will pro­vide wa­ter for ir­ri­ga­tion of about 2,000 hectares of land, and with that kind of land un­der cul­ti­va­tion all year round, it will im­prove the econ­omy of this area and en­hance food se­cu­rity, it will re­duce de­pen­dency on food im­por­ta­tion,” she said.

The Di­rec­tor of Dams and Reser­voir Oper­a­tion, Regi­nald Ik­peawujo, while com­mend­ing the con­trac­tors said all tur­bines and other equip­ment for the hy­dropower com­po­nent are in place, as­sur­ing that the project would be com­pleted by the end of the year.

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