Haruna Usman, Birnin Kebbi
On November, the 20th 2019 President Muhammadu Buhari signed an Executive Order to end open defecation across the country, the motive behind it was to save open environment and it’s inhabitants from the attendent consequences of indiscriminate open defection.
Since the order was signed there was little response from states across the country.
A personal survey carried out by our correspondent indicated that, open defecation is persistent in Kebbi.
The authorities concerned are practically slow to impliment the order to rid the state of the dangers that are associated with open defecation.
To get the views of the relevant agency and/or ministry a visit was paid to the General Manager Kebbi Urban Development Agency (KUDA) but he declined to speak on the matter on the pretext that he is not aware of it and only the Permanent Secretary has the right to speak on the matter.
Following his refusal to speak on the Executive Order, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Lands and Housing, a is mother ministry of KUDA , Malami Shekare also refused to speak on the open defecation order insisting its the General Manager of KUDA has the right.
The hide and seek game continues as open defecation persist in Kebbi, the stand of the state government on the President’s Executive Order on open defecation still remains unknown.
Despite the availability of public toilets in the state, lack periodic maintenance continues to escalate open defecation three years after the executive order was signed.
Most of the areas visited are eyesore as human feaces are litered on the floor or in the culverts constituting health hazards, locals said they have written to concern authorities to halt open defecation as during raining season their houses are usually invaded by offensive and dangerous ordour emanating from decaying human feaces.
In 2019, The Rural Water and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA) in Kebbi State in collaboration with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has developed a road map toward eliminating open deification in the state.
Similarly, the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Kebbi State government and National Orientation Agency (NOA) have sought for the general public cooperation to end open defecations before year 2025 timeline.
Residents of Kebbi are hopeful that sooner or later, the menace of Open Defecation would be reduced to the bearest minimun with the support of the relevant authorities.