This study assessed the levels of heavy metals in drinking water sources in Enyigba community in Abakaliki Local Government Area, Nigeria. Four sites were visited for sampling: two surface water (streams) and two underground water (boreholes). Three water samples were collected from each source making it a total of twelve water samples. The levels of Arsenic (As), Cadmium (Cd), Copper (Cu), Zinc (Zn) and Lead (Pb) were determined using an Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS). The result showed significantly (P˂0 .05) high level of As, Cd and Pb which also exceeded the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended maximum limits specification for drinking water. The metal index revealed significant (P˂0.05) elevated level of As, Cd and Pb. There was no significant (P˃0.05) difference between the stream water and borehole waters in terms of their elemental load. The findings suggest that drinking water from these sources are heavily contaminated by As, Cd and Pb and there is possible risk of contamination of the diverse ecosystem located in the neighbourhood. Therefore, the mining communities and the miners should be properly enlightened on the dangers associated with exposure to heavy metals to prevent them from polluting water bodies.
Key words: Enyigba, borehole, drinking water, stream, heavy metals, pollution.
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