The Federal Ministry of Water Resources has urged State Governments to prioritise water safety plans at all times, so as to reduce contamination from point of production to consumption.
Mrs Abosede Orimoloye, Assistant Director, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Collaborations, made the call at a Workshop for the Development of Cholera Emergency Preparedness and Response (EPR) Plan in Asaba, Delta State.
She said people who use alternative water sources apart from public water points should treat their water sources four times in a year, saying new innovation had been recorded in treating water in the country.
She said the importance of water safety plan was to minimise contamination of drinking water sources, prevent contamination during storage, distribution and handling.
She said Nigerians ought to be aware of the risks posed along the water chain and how to manage those risks, saying this would reduce the prevalence of water borne diseases.
“We must all do what we can to prevent contamination, don’t wait for it to happen, multiple barriers can be used so that if one barrier fails, the water stays safe.
“We must use management systems that are improved and worth it, this helps to improve public health especially in reducing water borne diseases.”
The assistant director however stressed the need for more research on water treatments, adding that this would modify systems that would suit different settings.
Orimoloye said safe water chain could be achieved from water source, transport and consumption, saying communities to benefit from water safety plans must be open defecation-free, safe from insurgence and communal conflicts.
A staff of the ministry, Mr Charles Ebofin, said states must develop Cholera Emergency Preparedness and Response (EPR) Plan, so as to forestall possible illnesses and deaths.
He said the plan would help in cholera forecasting and preparedness so as to know areas of interventions.
“The 2022 floods came with a lot of problems, many states delayed in giving accurate information that would help us in managing emergency interventions, so we want a change.”
By Tosin Kolade