The Federal Government (FG) has taken the campaign on use of clean toilet to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) Camp in Bakassi, Bakassi Local Government Area of Cross River.
Minister of Humanitarian Affairs Hajiya Sadiya Farouk, who led the campaign team, distributed various sanitary items and disinfectants worth millions of naira to the IDPs.
Represented by Director of Social Development in the Ministry, Taiwo Bashorun, , Farouk urged the IDPS and other Nigerians, to imbibe the culture of using clean toilets to avoid being infected with toilet related diseases.
Speaking on the topic: “Clean Nigeria-Use The Toilet Campaign”, the minister stated that with clean toilet, most diseases transmitted through the toilet could be curtailed.
According to her, as you may be aware, the practice of open defecation has become common in many communities due to lack of sanitary facilities.
“Nigeria still tops the global league of countries in which open defecation is prevalent with an estimated 47 million of our people indulging in the practice.
“It has been abundantly established that open defecation has negative impact on the health, educational outcomes and socio-economic life of the populace, especially women and children.
“Women girls and younger children with no access to improve toilet facilities at home or in school are especially vulnerable.
“Beyond direct health risks, shame and potential violence bare constant reality for them when when seeking a place to defecate,” she said.
Farouk stressed that the economic impact of unsafe water, poor sanitation and hygiene depleted the Nigeria economy by almost equivalent to 1.3 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product GDP.
She also noted that about 124,000 children under the age of five were lost annually as a result of diarrhoea.
Farouk said the essence of the campaign for use of clean toilets was to sensitise the populace on the need for a new culture that could put an end to open defecation before the end of 2025.
Items distributed include sanitary pads, Izals and Dettol among others.