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FG, UNICEF to reform water, sanitation sector

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By Okunloye Abiodun

Lack of availability of sanitation and hygiene services will be tackled.

The Nigerian government has joined hands with UNICEF and various development partners to present an innovative plan to expedite the accessibility of climate-resilient, secure, and lasting water, sanitation, and hygiene services across the country. During the WASH Review Meeting held in Abuja, Nigeria, on Thursday, Professor Joseph Utsev, the Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, emphasized that the set target corresponds with the aims of SDGs 6.1 and 6.2, as well as the National Open Defecation Free (ODF) 2025 Roadmap. He stated that this gathering holds utmost significance for all stakeholders in the WASH sector, as it offers an opportunity to evaluate advancements made thus far and deliberate on forthcoming strategies.

He pointed attention to the inequality in the availability of sanitation and hygiene services as opposed to water supply. This issue affects several sectors, including health, education, and the economy, stressing the need to meet the WASH targets under SDG 6 in Nigeria. Furthermore, he highlighted the possible consequences for both the region and the world, considering Nigeria’s important geographical location. Through various initiatives spearheaded by his ministry, he highlighted FG’s commitment to filling gaps in the sector and prioritizing WASH. These efforts encompassed initiatives such as the National Action Plan for WASH Sector Revitalization, the ‘Clean Nigeria: Use the Toilet’ Campaign, and the Sustainable Urban and Rural WASH (SURWASH) Project, to name a few.

Various initiatives were taken to actualize the SDG goal.

Furthermore, the government’s determination to address Nigeria’s inadequate access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services is fortified by various actions. Examples of such actions include the establishment of a comprehensive National WASH Policy and the formalization of agreements for the implementation of SchoolWASH, YouthWASH and Health WASH Programmes. These measures exhibit the government’s resolute determination to rectify the country’s poor WASH statistics and hasten the provision of sustainable services in schools and public areas. Utsev emphasized the significance of the Yearly WASH Sector Review as a chance for a unified introspection and consensus on a fresh course to expedite the realization of SDG 6.1 and 6.2 in Nigeria.

Dr. Rownak Khan, the Deputy Representative of UNICEF in Nigeria, stressed the importance of addressing the difficulties experienced by children in the nation. She urged for a deliberate allocation of $9 billion each year to cater to the WASH sector. Khan drew attention to UNICEF’s diverse initiatives designed to secure essential social services for children, specifically concentrating on enabling access to clean water and improved sanitation facilities. Khan unveiled disturbing information regarding the detrimental impact of contaminated water on a considerable proportion of children, indicating that about 68 percent of the accessible water sources were polluted with detrimental microorganisms.

Local individuals will be trained to manage water sources effectively.

UNICEF expressed its commitment to partnering with the government and other stakeholders to ensure that children have the opportunity to access clean water. This collaborative effort will be implemented gradually and progressively. Apart from tackling water pollution, UNICEF is also actively engaged in training local individuals to manage water sources effectively and enhance the availability of hygienic facilities. These dedicated endeavours are an integral part of the Clean Nigeria campaign, striving to eradicate open defecation practices. In addition, UNICEF goes beyond the boundaries of the educational sphere, reaching out to communities where clean water and sanitation are imperative for the well-being of every child, regardless of their attendance at school.

Khan brought up a report released in November that examined how climate change affects children in Nigeria, including challenges like droughts and floods. The deputy representative mentioned that UNICEF intends to work together with the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Water and Sanitation to create an action plan addressing these climate-related issues. With the inaugural year of the 2023-2027 implementation cycle, the annual forum provided a platform for important individuals involved to assess the progress made by the FGN/UNICEF WASH initiatives.

Related Article: Access to clean water in Nigeria is vital

Alhaji Aliyu Shinkafi, the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, emphasized the significance of collaboration and recognized both the accomplishments and challenges faced in delivering lasting WASH solutions. Represented by Mrs. Elizabeth Ugoh, the Director of Water Quality Control and Sanitation, Shinkafi praised stakeholders for their unwavering dedication, underscoring their commitment to the welfare of every Nigerian citizen. He conveyed his strong belief in the revolutionary alliance and anticipated more remarkable progress in the times ahead while expressing deep appreciation to UNICEF and its associates for their unwavering backing.

Related Link

UNICEF: Website

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1 month ago

FG, UNICEF to reform water, sanitation sector.Lack of availability of sanitation and hygiene services will be tackled.Express your point of view.

1 month ago

FG and UNICEF to improve the water and sanitation industry. We’ll address the issue of sanitation and hygiene services being unavailable. We must seriously restructure the sanitation industry. Only until we have cleaned up the environment and modified our water supply will this be possible.

1 month ago

For everyone’s health, having access to clean water and sanitary facilities is crucial. It’s fantastic to see institutions like FG and UNICEF together to address this problem. Communities that don’t have access to these crucial services will undoubtedly benefit from it.

Adeoye Adegoke
1 month ago

I think it’s fantastic that the Federal Government and UNICEF are teaming up to reform the water and sanitation sector. Lack of availability of sanitation and hygiene services is a significant issue that needs to be addressed. Access to clean water and proper sanitation is a basic human right, and it’s essential for public health and well-being.
By tackling this problem, the government and UNICEF are taking a proactive step towards improving the lives of people in Nigeria. It will not only help prevent the spread of diseases but also contribute to better overall hygiene practices.
I believe that this initiative will have a positive impact on communities, especially those in underserved areas. It will ensure that everyone, regardless of their location or socioeconomic status, has access to safe and clean sanitation facilities. This, in turn, will improve the quality of life and contribute to the overall development of the country.
It’s encouraging to see the government and international organizations working together to address such critical issues. I hope that this collaboration leads to tangible improvements in water and sanitation services across Nigeria, making a lasting difference in the lives of its people. 🌍💧🚽

30 days ago

Collaboration between Nigeria and UNICEF to enhance water, sanitation, and hygiene services is crucial for sustainable development. Addressing climate-related challenges and investing in the WASH sector will benefit communities, especially children, ensuring clean water access and improved sanitation facilities. The partnership reflects a commitment to the Clean Nigeria campaign and aligns with SDG goals. Stakeholders’ dedication is appreciated, and there’s optimism for significant progress in the future.