Stakeholders call for improved sanitation in schools

Temitope Mustapha, Calabar

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Stakeholders have called for increase in percentage of WASH facilities in Educational Institutions across Nigeria.

Experts say that government at all levels should change the narratives of the known 15.7percent schools with basic water supply and sanitation services in the country.

Acting Programme Manager Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency, Mr Eyo Offiong , said in Calabar, on the sidelines of the Media Dialogue held on The Use of the Toilet Campaign , that there is need for adequate water and sanitation  facilities in schools to aid teaching outcomes and as well retain female students in schools.

“The 15.7 per cent of schools in Nigeria with basic facilities is a national outlook, it is a national average.

“It is for government to ensure the political will and commitment to provide water in schools as well as basic sanitation facilities to expand beyond the communities or local government where the donor partners are involved in.”

“It is for government to commit funds into ensuring that this happens. The good thing about the statistics is that it brings clearly what needs to be done and how it can be done. 

“So far, in Cross River state, the government has also declared emergency in the wash sector last year. 

“The government has gone further to drill over 200 solar powered bore hole in the past six months and the process of completion is ongoing.”

 

“Only 5.5percent of schools have basic gender sensitive, water supply and sanitation although in  Cross River State we have 4,088 volunteers Hygiene promoters that we have trained on how to train others in hygiene practices”

He mentioned that 20,367 new household latrines have been constructed under the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaboration Council Programme.

The Representative of the Clean Nigeria Project, Mrs Yemisi Akpa made known that a technical delegation from Nigeria had studies India’s module of progress due to Nigeria’s similarities with India.

Mrs Akpa identified strong political leadership, adequate public funding, and partnership with the private sector, civil society organisations and people’s participation as key to Nigeria’s success in achieving open defecation areas.

Meanwhile , Nicholas Igwe ,a representative of the sector sector decried the sanitation condition in most higher Institutions in Nigeria.

According to him, “most of the higher Institutions in Nigeria do not have adequate toilet facilities”

Igwe hinted that a toilet facility project is ongoing at the University of Abuja.

He emphasised that improved sanitation and adequate provision of toilet facilities in tertiary institutions across Nigeria will lead to increase in enrolment as well as help retain female students in basic schools.

 

Nnenna.O