The federal government took a campaign against open defecation and poor personal hygiene on Saturday, last week, to an Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in Edo State. The camp, which is run by the Home for the Needy Foundation, is currently home to over 3000 people, is in the heart of Ohogua, Ovia North East local government area, headed by Pastor Solomon Folorunsho.
Speaking at the event tagged ‘Use the toilet Campaign’, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Farouq, expressed concerns that Nigeria may not meet its 2025 target to end open defecation without a change in attitude from Nigerians. “An estimated 120 million people in the country lack access to improved sanitation facilities, or facilities that hygienically separate human waste from human contact,” she said.
Farouq also announced the ongoing Clean Nigeria Campaign, launched in 2019, and the government’s plan to take the campaign to various IDP camps across the country.
The Director of Social Welfare, Edo State Ministry of Social Development and Gender Issues, Irhabor Taye, pledged to collaborate with the federal government to spread awareness.
The camp coordinator, Pastor Solomon Folorunsho, requested support from the government in the areas of education and food provisions for the IDP residents. He added that the camp has over 200 students in the university studying different courses, noting that the students are performing excellently well in the Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) examination.
According to him, the camp for a while has not received aid in terms of food from the government. “Most of them that sat for JAMB here scored over 200. I want the government to pay attention to their education by funding and scholarships. For some time now, we have not received any food items from the government; we don’t know if such has been diverted,” he said.