Ekiti charges residents on healthy sanitation practices, ‘one household, one toilet’

By John Odunjo

Ekiti State Commissioner for Infrastructure and Public Utilities, Prof Mobolaji Aluko, has charged residents of the state to promote healthy sanitation practices.

Aluko charged every household without a toilet in the capital city and all parts of the state to build at least one to attain an Open Defecation Free (ODF) status and as well avoid the spread of diseases that at present kill about 1000 children under five years every single day globally.

The commissioner said that Ekiti State Government extended the sensitization campaign to faith-based organizations including churches and mosques in collaboration with Local Governments’ Water, Sanitation and Hygiene departments to sensitize people on the One-House/One-Toilet initiative.

He said, “The focus is to attain an Open Defecation Free (ODF) status across all local government areas. Achieving the one-house, one toilet initiative would tremendously reduce and may totally eradicate open defecation in the State.

The commissioner, who spoke in Ado Ekiti as sensitisation teams move around the 16 local government areas as part of efforts to join the rest of the world to mark 2023 World Toilet Day, with the theme, “Accelerated Change”, said it was the United Nations’ attempt to sensitize societies about the dangers associated with improper disposal of human waste.

Aluko stressed that a clean and healthy environment takes top priority in government’s policies, programmes and activities.

The commissioner, who reiterated the state government’s commitment to residents’ general well-being, said that it had taken the initiative to extend the sensitization beyond the annual event which is just one day out of 365days in a year in order to achieve best result.

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Engr Olumide Ajayi, described the standard of improved toilet to be: excreta being separated from human contact, connected to sewer system or septic tank, well ventilated improved pit latrine with slab and with hand washing facilities.

Ajayi sought collaboration among the local government chairmen, community leaders, churches, mosques and relevant stakeholders to collectively create an avenue for more awareness towards achieving Open Defecation Free across all the local government areas of the State.

At Ikole Ekiti AUD Central Mosque, the Chief Imam Alhaji Alabi Azeez Olatubosun, while welcoming the sensitization team, affirmed the usefulness of toilet to humanity saying it goes a long way in preventing spread of epidemic diseases.

He said that according to Islamic faith, cleanliness is second to none hence the need for Muslim fateful to embrace construction and use of improved sanitation facilities.

Also speaking, the lead pastor of Araromi Baptist Church, Igede Ekiti, Revd. Olumuyiwa Emmanuel, expressed appreciation to the state government for efforts made to sensitize people on the importance of having at least one toilet per household for proper hygiene.

The cleric promised to follow up on people who don’t have toilet and encourage them to have one as well as maintain a proper hygienic lifestyle.

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