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Cholera outbreaks in Nigeria embarrassing – CFSF

Sani Baba | File Image

Cholera: Indicative of govt’s failure in prioritising access to water

By Valentine Amanze

The Citizens Free Service Forum (CFSF), a non-governmental organization, has berated Nigeriam government for the recurrent cholera outbreaks in the country, insisting that the current incident exposed the lip service that all levels of government pay to water and sanitation issues.

CFSF’s criticism is coming on the heels of the flooding incidents predicted by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NiMET) which it said could worsen and prolong the current cholera outbreak that has killed about 65 people across the country.

In a statement issued in Abuja, the CFSF Executive Director, Comrade Sani Baba, lamented that the deaths recorded thus far due to the current outbreak were disturbing and unfortunate even as it warned that more outbreaks would occur unless the government took the issue of sustainable investment in the water sector and sanitation seriously.

Also read: Flood hits Lagos, destroys properties

His words: “Even with the humongous sums that the federal and state governments budget for provision of water every year it has become embarrassing that Nigeria is still listed among countries with cholera outbreaks and deaths.”

Baba said that the floods predicted by NiMET may further breach and contaminate water sources and expose citizens to cholera and other vectors that would undermine their health.

“The situation looks gloomy. The timing of the floods which coincides with the cholera outbreak is a recipe for more infections and deaths except government at all levels take urgent and proactive steps beyond ongoing sensitization efforts.

“The provision of water must also go beyond the urban areas to remote localities where locals depend on unwholesome sources for their domestic and other uses,” he said.

He appealed to Nigerians to intensify efforts at x-raying and scrutinizing budgetary allocations to the water sector to hold public officials to account and ensure sustainable funding within the public sector.

“CFSF will continue working with other civil society and labour groups to expose and challenge impediments to access and affordability, both of which have forced Nigerians to patronize unwholesome water,” he said.

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