World Water Day is an annual United Nations observance day on the importance of water and its sustainable management which also serve as an opportunity to call on the Nigerian government to initiate solutions that will lead to clean water and sanitation for Nigerians.
Global Citizen, an international advocacy organization and P&G, a global leading consumer product company on Monday hosted an exclusive celebration of the World Water Day at Transcorp Hilton Abuja, Nigeria.
Speaking on behalf of Cross River State Governor Prof Ben Ayade, DG Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr Betta Edu said lives are save in millions when Government invest in water sanitation as Cross River State Government has earmarked 15 million US Dollars investment on water sanitation for the next five years and are still committed to being the first open defecation state in West Africa.
According to her His Excellency, Senator (Prof) Ben Ayade is committed to water sanitation by ensuring that everyone living in Cross River State will have access to quality potable clean water and sanitation. She noted that Nigeria has only 10 open Defecation free Local Government areas and five of them are in cross River with Ikom and Yala celebrating their free status last weekend. Water is needed to ensure sanitation. She praised WSSCC, UNICEF, UKAID, United purpose, RUWASA & Global citizens for their efforts
She called on all States in Nigeria not to be left behind by emulating Cross River State effort on water & sanitation as it will save healthcare cost and reduce the rate of hospitalization for citizens.
Edu said for Nigeria, poor access to water and sanitation are some of the major reasons for the high mortality rate in children under five.
“Contaminated drinking water and poor sanitation increase the risk of children contacting water-borne diseases. If we imbibe the culture of washing our hands at least four times in a day, it will save alot of hospital visit says Governor Ayade represented by Dr Betta Edu.
The event feature high-level discussions with Nigerian government representatives on how to solve these problems.
Nigeria’s Minister for Water Resources Suleiman Adamu also gave a keynote address on how Nigeria is solving these problems. Praising Governor Ben Ayade for his new commitment to water and sanitation.
A panel discussion was moderated by Nigerian journalist Chika Oduah which features other decision makers, activists for clean water and sanitation.