For Nigeria to be free from open defecation, 47 million people need to change their behavior and stop discharging their fecal wastes indiscriminately in public places.
9.4 million toilets will also need to be constructed to accommodate such persons.
This was one of the key points of an Open-Defecation-Free Nigeria campaign held on Tuesday in Port Harcourt by the National Orientation Agency (NOA).
According to the State Director, Young Ayotamuno the campaign sought to sensitize and discuss how the Federal Government can eradicate open defecation in Nigeria by 2025 in line with the executive order, 009.
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He said Rivers State makes up for 16% of the national statistics on open defecation in the country, stressing that there is a need to eradicate it completely.
He said: ”For us to be Open defecation free, it is not the responsibility of the government alone but it is the duty of all of us as individuals and communities. The government can only drive the process but so much is expected from the community, from individuals, and from the private sector”.
”In Nigeria, of the 774 LGAs prone to defecation, only 27 LGAs are Open defecation free. In Rivers state, we have about 16% of Open defecation in the country. We aim to put in place facilities and behavioral changes such that we get to the level of 0%. Until we get to that point, we will still be classified as a state where open defecation exists. We are doing well in comparison to other states but we are not there yet, according to global standards”.