BY AMOS DUNIA, ABUJA – President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday signed Executive Order 009 entitled, “The Open Defecation-Free Nigeria by 2025 and Other Related Matters Order, 2019.”
This Executive Order takes effect from Wednesday, November 20, 2019.
The Order declares that Nigeria is committed to being open defecation free by 2025 as well as put into effect the National Open Defecation Free (ODF) Roadmap developed by the Federal Ministry of Water Resources with support from other key sector players across Nigeria be put into effect.
The Executive Order stated that there re is established in the Federal Ministry of Water Resources a National Secretariat called “Clean Nigeria Campaign Secretariat”.
The Order authorized the Secretariat on behalf of the President to implement the Order by ensuring that all public places including schools, hotels, fuel stations, places of worship, market places, hospitals and offices have accessible toilets and latrines within their premises.
The Executive Order directed all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government to cooperate with the Clean Nigeria Campaign Secretariat.
It further reads; “The National Assembly and the State Houses of Assembly shall enact legislation on the practice of open defecation with appropriate sanctions and penalties.
“All development projects shall include construction of sanitation facilities as an integral part of the approval and implementation process.
“The Secretariat shall terminate when Nigeria is declared Open Defecation Free.
“All enforcement authorities are hereby directed to diligently collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Water Resources in implementing this Order.”
A statemen by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina said that the Executive Order 009 came into being against the background that Nigeria is ranked second amongst the nations in the world with the highest number of people practicing open defecation estimated at over 46 million people – a practice which has had a negative effect on the populace, and has contributed to the country’s failure to meet the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs);
Adesina said; “President Buhari had described the statistics on open defecation and access to pipe borne water service and sanitation as disturbing, and had declared commitment to implement the National Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Action Plan;
“The President had declared a State of Emergency on Nigeria’s water supply, sanitation and hygiene sector, the action being imperative as it will reduce the high prevalence of water borne diseases in different parts of the country which have caused preventable deaths;
“Nigeria has committed to end open defecation throughout the country by 2025 in consonance with her commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”