These beautiful volcanic mountains are the source of cool, enchanting springs, which supply water to the popular spring water company (SWAN).
Getting to one of the springs was a tough and rough journey. The road was unmotorable and in the company of a guide, the reporter made the weary trip on the stony, winding path. The surging landscape was a sight to behold—scenic, grassy, and green. Some herds of cattle were sighted grazing.
Finally, we got to where the fall was, though not the main fall. It was one of the smaller ones, yet it was fascinating to see how crystal clear water cascaded down rocks, making sweet music to the ears.
Going down the narrow foot path leading to where the water was coming from, this reporter was scared. It took a while before she finally surmoned courage to go down, but it was after the guide assured her of safety.
The foot path was bushy, rocky and slippery. Getting to the foot of the path, I now knew the reason for the sounds. It was the water gushing out from beneath the ground with full force as if it was been pushed out by something. I stood in awe staring at the beautiful, crystal-clear water and at the same time, taking in the coolness the air around had to offer. While there, a lady with a baby strapped to her back came to fetch some water and she fetched directly from where the water was coming out. The guide told the reporter that the water was drinkable. There was no need for boiling in the name of killing the germs.
After spending about 30 minutes there our reporter then went on another ‘journey’, this time to the factory of the famous SWAN water. At the factory, Mr Simon Dakop, the production manager, who was acting for the operations manager who was on leave as at the time of filing this report, gave a brief history of the company.
He told this reporter that Avian International, a French company which is the leading bottled water-producing company in the world came to Nigeria in 1979, a time when none existed.
“They came to conduct a hydro-geological survey and did some sampling in various regions around the country and Kerang spring was found to be the most suitable.
“Their reasons were that the mineral composition of the spring were just suitable for human consumption and that the location of the spring was suitable. It is located far away from highly-densed areas, away from human activities and pollution,” he said.
Dakop said the company was started in collaboration with some Nigerians. However, he mentioned that the company had some challenges, the major one being the lack of good roads. He told this reporter that the state government did some work on the road some twenty years back, and two years ago, the local government thought of refurbishing the road.
When asked by this reporter if the company could be relocated, he said no and the reason was because of the source of the water. Speaking on the source of the water supply, he said the water was from a volcano which is dormant, and it has a central point of emergence and when it comes down the mountains, it breaks into three ‘branches’ at three different locations and the one the guide took our reporter to was the second ‘branch’. He also added that the water comes all year round.
Kerang springs are truly a place to visit. Apart from the fact that it is home to Nigeria’s foremost bottled-water SWAN, its landscape is truly a sight to behold, the air is refreshing, cool, soothing. The hills are beautiful, vegetation-lush.
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