By Salisu Sani-Idris
The Federal Capital Territory Administration has banned the use of pipe borne water for car wash business, its spokesman, Mr Segun Kayode said.
Kayode told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), that government was spending huge sums on water treatment and would not allow people to waste it to wash cars.
“Already, the FCTA has directed the board to disconnect water supply from car wash points across the territory,” he said, adding that car wash operations were only recognised at filling stations “and some few areas”.
“We recognise only the car wash points at petrol filling stations; waterboard has not disconnected water supply to those areas,” he said.
According to him, most car wash operators at filling stations have the right approval and are paying their bills as and when due.
He explained that the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), had complained to the FCTA, during a Monitoring and Evaluation meeting, that some car wash operators were polluting the city with water and spoiling the roads.
“Apart from the fact that water is being wasted, the same water spread on roads thereby leading to flooding which spoils infrastructure in the city.
“So, we were directed to disconnect water supply in all car wash points not only in Kubwa, but the whole of Abuja.
“Whoever wants to operate a car wash should dig a borehole because portable water from the FCT Water board is not meant for car wash.
“We cannot allow some people to waste portable water any how in the name of car wash because some people are looking for this water and they cannot get it.
“We still have satellite towns that we need to supply water to. Government is till working on that.
“We cannot afford to accept such waste. Besides, most of them did not get the right authorisation from water board to connect water.
“Most times, when we go to some of them, they don’t have meter and even the ones that have the meter bypass it,” he said.
He said that before the board disconnected water supply from most car wash points in Kubwa, it had reached out to the operators through its Area Office and asked them to stop wasting water, “but they refused to adhere to the instruction”.
“As you can see, the climate is changing and is affecting water. Globally, people are working toward preserving water.
“Abuja is a modern city and we cannot allow things to be done anyhow. There are laws guiding how car wash can be operated in the city.
“Car wash operators should contact AEPB, the board in charge of environment, to educate them on how to operate,” he said.
He warned car wash operators against reconnecting water supply, adding that the board would take legal action against defaulters.
Kayode said that the board had contacted the Nigeria Civil Defence and Security Service (NCDSC), to monitor the water pipeline, arrest and prosecute whoever reconnected water.
Reacting, the Chairman, Car Wash Operators Association, Kubwa chapter, Mr Moses Moore, said that the disconnection of water supply had paralysed their businesses in the area.
Moore said that the association was exploring all options to resolve the issue with the water board to enable members resume their normal business.
“For now, few of us that have money have started digging wells to get water and operate their car wash business.
“We have been working with the Bwari Area Council to operate our businesses without any challenge until when we heard that FCTA ordered the board to disconnect us.
“They said we area causing hazard on the roads and destroying infrastructure” he fumed.