150, 000 kids die annually to poor water, hygiene – LG chair

The national demographic survey conducted by the United Nations Children Funds (UNICEF) said over 150, 000 children die annually in Nigeria as a result of poor water, sanitation and hygiene practices.

This was made known by chairman of Tsafe the council of Zamfara state, Alhaji Aminu Mudi Tsafe on the occasion of 2019 Global Hand Washing Day held at Yandoto Aliyu Model Primary School Tsafe on Tuesday.

He said the UNICEF survey indicated that in six states in Nigeria, including Zamfara, an average of 82 per cent of people washed their hands before eating, lamenting how the figure was dropped to 34.6 per cent in 2017, which indicated that only 14 per cent people washed their hands with soap after cleaning their children’s faeces, which is a serious public health risk.

He further explained that his administration has approved 10 per cent counterpart funding to the Community and Social Development Project (CSDP) for the construction of sanitation facilities in 10 selected public places in Tsafe town with a view to eliminating open defecation in the LG.

He said, the theme of this year’s hand washing day commemoration is Clean Hands for All, assuring that his administration will ensure steady release of monthly operational funds to the local government area WASH unit to improve sanitation and hygiene practices.

Blueprint reports that a total of 141hand pump bore holes in communities, 46 hand pump bore holes, including force lift boreholes in primary schools, had been constructed across the 11 political wards in all 83,000 people in rural communities, saying 11,000 pupils in schools now have access to safe drinking water in the state supported by UNICEF in partnership with Zamfara state government.

In an address of welcome, Zamfara state RUWATSAN programme manager, Alhaji Sani Yaro Gurbinbore, stated that the global hand washing day was commemorated annually on the 15th of October to increase awareness, understanding and significance of hand washing with soap to improve sanitation and hygiene practices among communities.

He commended UNICEF and Zamfara state government for the unflinching support given to his agency on sanitation and hygiene improvement among communities in the state.

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