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Thursday, September 28, 2023

“47 Million Nigerians Lack Access To Basic Toilet Facilities,”UNICEF

Several Nigerian homes see constructing toilets in their home as unacceptable and against their beliefs, they prefer open defecation through the use of bushes

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Hamzat Ibrahim Abaga
Hamzat Ibrahim Abaga
Hamzat Ibrahim Abaga is a graduate of Mass Communication and aspiring investigative journalist.

NIGERIA. Abuja: As Nigeria is rated the second largest nation with open defecation after India, about 47 million of its citizens don’t have access to basic toilet facilities. The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has revealed.

Raphael Nwozor, UNICEF’s Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) specialist, made this known in Abuja during this year’s observance of World Toilet Day (WTD) celebrated every November 19. 

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This is sad and unacceptable that over 47 million Nigerians still do not have access to basic toilet facilities and are also rated as the second largest country with the number of open defecation, Nwozor said. 

Nwozor, further added that the lack of 47mllon Nigerians without basic toilet facility is to further stresses the fact that basic toilets facility is fundamental to human existence and their wellbeing. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the government to look into its provision. 

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The day is set aside to educate and enlighten the public about the need for having access to basic toilet facilities, be it through governments, community or an individual effort. 

“Over 47 million Nigerians do not have access to basic toilet facilities and the commemoration of the day is to re-echo the fact that a good toilet facility is a basic human need. The day is also to emphasize the need for every family, individual within the community, to at least, have access to toilet facilities”, Nwozor said.

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 Some Nigerian homes see constructing toilet structures in their home as unacceptable and against their beliefs, as such, they prefer open defecation through the use of bushes.  

Perceptions of some Nigerians are that defecating in their homes is improper, and that is why they utilize bushes and rivers in their surroundings while overlooking its implications. 

Nwozor, however, applauded the effort of the Federal Government in providing the facilities for the attainment of Nigeria being declared “Open Defecation Free” (ODF) by 2025 as a state of emergency was declared in Nigeria by WASH.

Health Implications of open defecation 

Health implications of open defecation are diarrhoea, cholera, typhoid and malaria, among others. Having good toilet facilities was a fundamental human right which every government should ensure it provides to its citizens, Nwozor noted.

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