By: Bamidele Fashube
WaterAid Nigeria and the National Water Resources Institute (NWRI) have signed a three-year partnership to deliver equitable sustainable total sanitation at scale in Nigeria.
The partnership is expected to combine the water, sanitation, and hygiene expertise of WaterAid and the training expertise of the NWRI to improve and systemically support sector capacity for sanitation programme design and development in Nigeria.
In a statement by Oluseyi Abdulmalik, Communications and media Manager, WaterAid Nigeria, the organisation said the partnership will bridge knowledge and capacity gaps and contribute to strengthening the sector’s capacity for improved sanitation in the country.
“It will promote learning and capacity building on rural sanitation in Nigeria, working through a systems-based approach to embed the principles and approaches to enhance sustainability, equity and scale towards universal access by 2030.
” It will review and integrate the emerging framework for rural sanitation promotion in Nigeria, and integrate learnings from WaterAid’s implementation of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation-funded Sustainable Total Sanitation (STS) project with the Rethinking Rural Sanitation (RRS) guidelines to develop and deliver modules and certified short courses on the RRS and STS emerging framework training guides,”the statement reads.
It also quoted Evelyn Mere,Country Director as saying that the state of sanitation in the country has adverse effects on health, livelihoods, education, gender equality, and socio-economic development.
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“Despite slight progress nationally, Nigeria ranks first among countries globally with the highest population of people defecating in the open and we still have 112 million without access to basic sanitation. Yet, the goal of the National Action Plan, to end open defecation by 2025 and attain universal access to water supply, sanitation and hygiene by 2030, continues to be challenged by significant institutional and capacity gaps.
“A multi-partner approach is crucial to realising the overall objectives and goal of the National Action Plan to revitalise the water, sanitation and hygiene sector and through this partnership, key drivers in the sanitation sector will gain relevant knowledge in sanitation approaches targeted at delivering equitable and sustainable results at scale,” the statement read.