- Background to the Study
Water is the most common substance on earth; it covers more than 70% of the earth surface (Okafor, 1995). Water is indispensable for man’s existence based on the fact that without water, there can be no life. All living things including plants, animals and man need water to survive. The human body is about two-third water and so do other living things contain water to keep them alive. Throughout history, water has been man’s survival and great civilizations have been located where water supplies were.
The demand for water is constantly growing in as much as the population is growing. Water is required for domestic chores at home such as; cleaning, cooking, bathing, laundry and toilet sanitation. We use water for Agricultural irrigation for crops growth. Factories and other sectors also utilize water in different ways. Davis and Cornwell (1998) noted that drinking water also known as potable water is water that is safe to drink or to use for food preparation. The amount of drinking water required varies. It depends on physical activity, age health issue and environmental conditions. Americans, on average drink one litre of water and 95% of people drink less than one litre per day, for those who work in hot climate up to 16 litres according to World Health Organisation (WHO, 1992). Water is essential for life typically in developed countries, tap water meet drinking water standard even though a small proportion is actually consumed or used in food preparation (WHO, 1992). According to United Nation noted that in 2015, 89% of people had access to water from source that is suitable for drinking called “Improved Water Source”.
United Nation (2010) noted that 4.2 billion have access to tap-water, another 2.4 billion have access to well or public tap water while 1.8 billion people still use an unsafe drinking water source which may be contaminated by faeces. This can result in infectious disease such as gastroenteritis, cholera and typhoid among others. Reduction of water borne disease and development of safe water resource is a major public health goal in developing countries. Safe drinking and basic sanitation are crucial to preservation of human health, especially children.
The World Bank while commenting on the World Water challenge stated that access to water supply services and sanitation is a major factor in reducing child mortality. It revealed that of about 1.7million deaths that occur every year worldwide (90 percent of which are children) are attributed to unsafe water. According to WHO/UNICEF reveal that Nigeria and many other sub-sahara African countries are lacking behind in achieving the millennium development goals and target sets for water and sanitation as drinking water coverage in Nigeria from 49 percent in 1990 to 48 percent in 2004 as against the expected 65 percent coverage. Such shortage can lead to serious economic disruptions and human suffering. Although Nigeria is blessed with abundant water resources government at all level (federal, state and local) have not been able to successfully harden these resources to ensure a sustainable and equitable access to safe, adequate improved and affordable water supply to the population.
The lack of access to safe drinking water is probably directly related to poverty and in many cases to corruption and inability of governments to develop the political will to provide water for their citizens. This situation has compelled many households, often the poor to end up buying water from water vendor at great expense.
- Statement of the Problem
In theory, the global stock of water could meet greatly expanded human needs. In reality the sources of water supply such as rain water, underground water i.e. boreholes/wells are what communities mainly relied upon for survival. Others have far more water than they want or need but not necessary in the right place or at the right time nor with the right quality.
Reasonably, safe supplies of potable water are unavailable for atleast one fifth of the world city dwellers and three quarter of its rural people; in many countries, less than one half of the rural population are served with adequate and safe water supply (Buiswas, 1978).
Environmentalists, geologists, geographers and scholars in different field of studies have raised alarms on the indiscriminate sinking of boreholds in rural and urban area (Ano & Okwunodulu, 2008; Ojo, 1995) due to numerous health implications, this is because in some areas, boreholes are located too near and down street of soak away pits or adjourning landfills/waste dump sites. The quality of water from such boreholes cannot be guaranteed due to element contamination. The recent development in infrastructures and the subsequent increase in population and number of boreholes to meet the large unavailability of pipe-borne water, no documented and quantitative information is available on the quality status of boreholes in the area. Though, the Cross River State Water Board limited tried to meet up with the water needs of people to keep on patronizing private providers. It is on this background that this study assesses the water quality status of boreholes in Uwanse Area of Calabar South Local Government Area, Cross River State.
- Aim and Objectives
The aim of the study is to examine nature of potable water supply in Uwanse area of Calabar South L.G.A of Cross River State.
The specific objectives includes to;
- Identify major sources of water supply in the areas
- Examine the distances to the nearest sources of water in the areas
- Accessing the quantity of Cross River State Water Board usage
- Examine the water quality (physio-chemical parameters)
- Make recommendation on possible problems associated with potable water in the areas.
- Significance of the Study
The finding of this research will be very useful to the inhabitants of Uwanse Area of Calabar South L.G.A and environs of Cross River State. It will serve as a reference material for sources of potable water supply. It will bring to light critically of the consequences of poor quality of potable water sources within the study areas.
- Scope of the Study
The scope of the study is within the assessment of potable water supply in Uwanse area of Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State.
Further, it focused on major sources of water supply in the area, distances to the nearest sources of water in the area, quantity of Cross River State Water Board usage by households, water quality (physio-chemical parameters). The parameters taken are temperature, pH, total dissolved solid, turbidity, conductivity, chemical oxygen demand, total suspended solids, dissolved oxygen, biochemical oxygen demand, nitrate and phosphorus determination.
- Study Area
The study was carried out in Uwanse Area of Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State is an old area, it is as old as the Calabar South. It is an area that is under Calabar South Local Government and it is located at the extreme southern fringes of Cross River State.
Uwanse is located in Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State and lies between latitude 5.0032 and longitude 8.32178. it is bounded in the south of calabar of Cross River State.
Uwanse shares the same climate with Cross River State likewise every other local government, which is sub-equatorial in nature.
The temperature is moderately high about at 8.50F means annual temperature and does not fluctuate greatly (Elloege, 1986). The relative humidity and rainfall figures are moderate with over 3.00mm. South South Nigeria, which lies at the coastal part of Nigeria and where the equatorial and Cameroun climate have a great influence. It has one of the heaviest annual rainfall in Nigeria with longer rainy season and normally has “dry season”.
The soil here is composed of loamy soil that aid in farming. The soil is mixed with loss particle of sedimentary rocks within the environment, with linear settlement and clustered settlements in both areas. The soil sample survey of Uwanse in Calabar South show the dominant of loamy, light brown.
- Socio-Economic Status
Generally, within the socio-cultural perspective; Uwanse has a shift settlement with multilingual due to migration from other tribes though originally they are Efiks. It shares the similar cultural heritage with the greater Calabar. Due to predominance of students, business men, civil servants and merchants. This however shows diversification of economic activities within the area. Residential quarters, administration, institution, hotel, police station etc portray the status of the area.