“…WE ALL MUST REDOUBLE OUR EFFORTS AND WORK TOGETHER IN ORDER TO MEET THE NATION’S WATER SUPPLY, SANITATION AND HYGIENE NEEDS…” Water Minister
The Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman H. Adamu FNSE, FAEng has restated that access to adequate Water, sanitation and hygiene( WASH)services, is a critical factor in the socio-economic development of any nation and contributes to human capital outcomes such as early childhood survival, health and educational attainment. Speaking further, Engr Adamu noted that the benefits of improved water supply cannot be optimal without corresponding improvement in sanitation and hygiene practices. The Hon Minister therefore said that we must redouble our efforts and work together in order to meet the Nation’s Water supply, sanitation and hygiene targets.
Engr. Adamu made the declaration on Thursday, 20th February 2020 in Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State during the flag off of Clean Ekiti State Campaign and the launch of the Roadmap towards making Ekiti State Open Defecation Free (ODF) by 2022.
In his address, the Minister pointed out that the action to end open defecation in Nigeria will require the contribution and commitment of everyone: Government at all levels, Civil Society, Private sector, Development Partners and the entire populace.
“It is our desire to aggressively mobilize the entire country towards ending the practice of open defecation, which has placed us on the global map as the country with the highest number of people indulging in the act with estimated at 47 million people” he said.
He noted that “Ekiti State is one of the few states that have taken up the initiative to launch their state level campaign as advocated during the National Launch of the “Clean Nigeria: Use the Toilet” Campaign by the Vice President in November 2019”.
The Minister encouraged the Executive Governor of Ekiti State, His Excellency Dr. Kayode Fayemi to use his position as the Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum, to demonstrate leadership by ensuring that his state becomes the first ODF State in Nigeria and equally encourage his colleagues to follow in this stride as we collectively work towards a country where all citizens have access to improved and sustainable Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services.
Earlier in his keynote address, the Executive Governor of Ekiti State, His Excellency Dr. Kayode Fayemi declared that the strategy was aimed at aligning with the Federal Government approach to the eradication of Open Defecation, taking into consideration the peculiarity of the State, particularly, the need to have sustainable management approach to public toilets and effective communication towards behavioral change and assured of budgetary provision and funding in line with National WASH Action Plan.
The high-points of the flag – off was the decoration of the First Lady of Ekiti State, Her Excellency Erelu Bisi Fayemi as the WASH Ambassador for the campaign of open defecation in the State and nomination of Traditional Rulers as the WASH Champions in their respective communities.
Kenechukwu Offie (Mrs.)
23rd February, 2020