An Non-Govermental Organisation, Alliance for Hygiene Promotion, has urged all tiers of government to increase budgetary allocation toward the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on Water and Sanitation.

Mr Victor Olaomi, the NGO Coordinator, made the plea in Abuja.

Olaomi said that achieving the SDGs on Water Security and Sanitation would require a different approach from that of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

According to him, finance plays a major role toward attainment of this goal.

It is saddening to note that most country’s budgets relegate water and sanitation to the background. When you look at budgets for water in most African countries, it can never be in the top five, this is not good. Most leaders forget that water is a multi-sectoral issue; it cuts across Agriculture, Health, Education and socio-economic issues,” Olaomi said.

So, we must stop this trend if we want to achieve the SDGs; that is why we are emphasising that all tiers of government must increase funding to implement water and sanitation programmes.”

He said that the implementation of such programmes would contribute to poverty alleviation, health improvements, social development and economic growth.

The coordinator said that ensuring secure, productive and sustainable water for all purposes, as well as sanitation and hygiene interventions, were prerequisites for sustainable economic development.

He said that the SDG six was interlinking with other SDGs, hence, the need to place emphasis on matching commitments and plans with concrete actions.

Olaomi urged governments at all levels to introduce policies to ensure that girls and women have separate and private toilet facilities in schools and at the workplace.

He said that these could also include availability of essential products like cloths, pads and menstrual cups and the means to dispose of and clean them properly.

Olaomi urged national and community leaders to speak out to change attitudes and customs, which restrain menstruating women and girls from achieving their full potential.

The coordinator also urged stakeholders to promote sanitation and hygiene, saying that they were the drivers of health, social and economic development around the world.

An environment that lacks sanitation and clean water is an environment where achieving other development goals is an impossible dream, the time to act is now,” he said.

 

Mazino Dickson