FG, UNICEF dialogues with media on water, sanitation

The Federal Government in collaboration with The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), have stressed the importance of water and sanitation in safeguarding the health of the children.
In his presentation, the UNICEF Chief of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Abuja, Zaid Jurji, said investment in water and sanitation is necessary in order for Nigeria to meet the sustainable development goals (SDGs) by 2030.
At the community level, there is a need for them to work at sustainability,” he said.
According to him, only less than 10 per cent of water in Nigeria is suitable for drinking.
Open defecation can also make water unsuitable for drinking despite how much effort we put in to make it suitable”.
Jurji mentioned that 25 per cent of the population in Nigeria practise open defecation, according to the MICS report.
According to him, “It is a fact that UNICEF and EU has been in the forefront of ensuring that we have access to safe drinking water supply, adequate sanitation and proper hygiene in our environment and communities.” Speaking further, Osanyinpeju said WASH remained very important in the life of a Child and significant to achieving Sustaining Development Goal 6.
Open defecation is incredibly dangerous, as contact with human waste can cause diseases such as cholera, typhoid, hepatitis, polio, diarrhoea, worm infestation and undernutrition.” Osanyinpeju said there was a need to improve on water and sanitation in order to end Open Defecation by 2030.
According to him; “Washing hands with soap after going to the toilet or before eating can have a significant impact on children’s health.
Good hygiene practices reduce the incidence of diseases such as pneumonia, trachoma, scabies, skin and eye infections and diarrhoea-related diseases like cholera and dysentery.” “Research has also shown that regular hand washing with soap can reduce the incidents of diarrhoea, a disease which can be deadly to children.” In the same vein, The Plateau state Commissioner for Water Resources and Energy, Engineer David Wuyep who declared the Media Dialogue open, commended UNICEF for its intervention in the provision of water in the state and assured that the state government will always ensure prompt payment of counterpart funds.

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