Lagos State, an emerging model mega city and the smallest state in West Africa is a ‘mini Mecca’ of some sorts due to the daily influx of people into the city for both trade and investment purposes, among other reasons due to the socio-economic vibrancy of the State triggered by the rapid infrastructural development of the aquatic state.
Her population according to the Lagos State Bureau of Statistics (LBS) is put at over 22,583,305 Million (Lagos State Estimate, 2014), and a population growth rate of 3.2 %. The United Nations estimates that the city population by year 2015, will have risen to about 24.5m at a growth rate of 6-8% per annum making Lagos State the 3rd Largest Mega city in the world.
Due to the aforementioned reasons, there is no doubt that Lagos is the melting point of sub-Saharan Africa. This influx has exerted great pressure on the available basic institutions facilitated by the State government. From housing to transportation challenges; power supply to road infrastructure, health, education, security without exempting the environment sectors specifically the water and waste water management.
Perhaps because of the magnitude of human and material lives associated and dependent on water, the State government took a bold step to address the issues relating to the provision of clean and safe drinking water for the sustenance of life by the creation of a commission whose sole responsibility is to control and regulate the activities of the state water resources and wastewater Management.
In 2004, the Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission was set up pursuant to S.48 of the Lagos Stage Water Sector Law (LSWSL) 2004 to protect the long term interests of consumers with regard to the quality, price and reliability of services received from service providers whether government owned or private and also to approve, review standards of performance of services and ensure the functions of water supply and sewage services are properly carried out.
A significant percentage of the residents of Lagos rely majorly on boreholes for their daily supply of water for one form of domestic use or the other and some of these boreholes unknown to them are not properly drilled making it susceptible to seepage and all other forms of surface contaminants.
Most of these wide spread illegal boreholes have serious implication for the residents and the environment and as such the Commission’s determination to curb the increase in water borne diseases associated with such shoddily drilled boreholes and the attendant implication on the State finances by sanitising the State water and waste water sector.
The Commission is empowered to prevent all forms of indiscriminate pollution of water bodies and discharge of untreated waste, among other functions, as all these have long term effects on water and the environment.
Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission (LSWRC) aspiring for success is set to pursue its objectives with vigour and with the right machinery in place, will achieve a steady progress within a short time. More so, with the right strategies and publicity put in place, Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission (LSWRC) will become a force to reckoned with in the environment sector of the state.
Establishment of the Commission
- Establishment pursuant to S.48 of the Lagos Water Sector Law, 2004
- Operation flagged off in September 2012
- Primary Objective
- “To protect the long term interests of consumers with regards to price, quality and reliability of service in the water supply and sanitation sector of Lagos State”.
- Ensure water supply and wastewater management services are properly carried out in Lagos State
Ensure operators in the sector secure reasonable return on investment to finance the proper delivery of these services and promote sustainability.