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A look at open defecation in Nigeria as World Toilet Day draws near

November 19, 2020 is World Toilet Day. In this report, NatureNews looks at the unsightly level of open defecation in Nigeria…

Nigeria ranks first among countries practising open defecation globally, according to the findings from the 2018 WASH National Outcome Routine Mapping (WASHNORM) survey.

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Findings shown that 47 million people in Nigeria practice open defecation. Consequently, Nigeria loses about 1.3% (N455 billion) of GDP annually due to poor sanitation.
An estimated 100 million Nigerians still lack basic sanitation facilities and 63 million do not have access to improved source of good drinking-water.
Open defecation is still practised mostly rural vicinity as a lack of modern toilets in such community.
A resident in Lugbe, Abuja, Olumide Ayeni stated that open defecating is the only option for some, while it is a preferred method to others.
“Some people in this community use river or stream and water from same river is taken for domestic use.
He said, “This is so harmful, it causes deadly diseases.
“Living in a slum is not easy, it can be so irritating, waking up and seeing both children and adults defecating openly.
“This can be eradicate if the government can help with modern toilets in every area and also to educate the children and parents.”
World Toilet Day celebrates toilets and raises awareness of the 4.2 billion people worldwide living without access to safely managed sanitation.
It is about taking action to tackle the global sanitation crisis and achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030.
This year’s theme of World Toilet Day is “Sustainable sanitation and climate change”.
Researchers say as climate change is accelerating, flood, drought, and rising sea levels are threatening sanitation systems – from toilets to septic tanks to treatment plants.
Floodwater can contaminate wells used for drinking water or flooding might damage toilets and spread human waste into communities and food crops, causing deadly and chronic diseases.
The UN calls on everyone to have sustainable sanitation, alongside clean water and handwashing facilities, to help protect and maintain our health security and stop the spread of deadly infectious diseases such as Covid-19, cholera, and typhoid.

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