The Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria (EHORECON), on Tuesday urged the Federal Government and stakeholders to provide functional toilets in public places to check open defecation.
The Registrar of the council, Mr Augustine Ebisike,who made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, said it was unfortunate that Nigerians lacked clean toilets owing to the lack of will to promote sanitation in public places.
Ebisike said the availability of clean toilets in homes and public places such as tourism destinations, offices, and motor parks, was crucial in the fight against open defecation.
“Go to the federal secretariat, go to the state secretariats, even some people’s home; you ask to see the toilet and everybody is embarrassed
“Go to Wuse market and ask to use the toilet; you will be surprised if there is one.
“They call it a restroom in some places, but I don’t see anybody who will rest in any public toilet in Nigeria.
“You are supposed to go to toilet and relax and do whatever you want to do.
“But here, there is no way you will see a toilet and you have an opportunity to relax unless you want to go and contact more diseases and we must talk about it if it will change.
“We see the consequences everywhere today; cholera is ravaging; I think it is going down; we thank God, but that cholera was reported from about seven states in Nigeria is an embarrassment.`
The registrar said that in other climes, people considered open defecation and its consequences as a taboo.
He said providing the public with clean toilets was “a symbol of better health, higher income, more education, higher social status, and a cleaner living environment“.
In 2001 the World Toilet Organisation declared Nov. 19 of each year a World Toilet Day.
The day is celebrated in more than 19 countries with 51 events being hosted by various water and sanitation advocates.