National News

Nigeria to host 2022 World Toilet Summit in November

Nigeria has been named as the official host of the 2022 World Toilet Summit, slated for November 2022.

Mr Jack Sim, Founder of the World Toilet Organization (WTO), made this announcement at a virtual meeting of Water Sanitation and Hygiene Stakeholders and Development Partners on Wednesday.

According to Sim, the United Nations member countries in 2013, unanimously adopted November 19, as the day to create awareness on access to toilets.

He said the summit would be a great opportunity for its members to come to Nigeria, to seek out ways to address its sanitation challenges.

He noted that Nigeria’s selection was an opportunity to showcase the extensive efforts of the Federal Government of Nigeria and also to drive the intended change.

Also speaking during the Zoom meeting, Mrs Caterina De Albuquerque, Chief Executive Officer, Sanitation and Water for All (SWA), pointed out that sanitation was at one time not discussed and almost forgotten globally.

She applauded the leadership of Nigeria, for prioritising Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, stressing that Nigeria’s example would inspire other African Countries to follow suit.

Dr Nicholas Igwe, National Coordinator, Organised Private Sector in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (OPSWASH), said that the choice of Nigeria for the summit was a clear endorsement of the commitment and political will of the Federal Government towards Water, Sanitation and Hygiene delivery in Nigeria.

He highlighted that the private sector had a critical role to play in driving the sanitation economy while also facilitating job creation.

He said SWA’s three key objectives included; building and sustaining political will, championing multi-stakeholder collaboration and facilitating strategies to attract new investments.

In his remarks, the Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, noted that the selection of Nigeria as the host country for 2022 World Toilet Summit was a welcome development.

He stressed that the choice of Nigeria to host the Summit was coming at a period when Nigeria had made concrete plans to exit from the comity of nations practising open defecation.

The Minister recalled that the ‘Open defecation free’ (ODF) Campaign was launched in November 2019, and was aimed at mobilising high level political support, resources and the entire populace towards building a new culture of safe sanitation.

He acknowledged that Nigeria needs all necessary support to ensure that the ODF Campaign gains traction with all stakeholders playing their part.

“I am optimism that the World Toilet Summit will provide a veritable platform for the mobilisation of Private Sector and other critical stakeholders in addressing the challenge of Open Defecation in the country’’.

He expressed agreement with Catarina De Albuquerque, SWA CEO’s opinion, that high level participation was key as regards rallying international delegates and stakeholders for the campaign.

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Water Resources (FMWR), Mrs Didi Walson-Jack, acknowledged and thanked all the stakeholders and Development partners present at the meeting.

She advised that joint commitment towards achieving the World Toilet Summit would take Nigeria to the next level.

The private sector, Development Partners and Stakeholders all commended the initiative and pledged their support to host a successful summit.

Private Sector and Development partners present at the meeting were, the World Bank, UNICEF. Reckitt, Coca-Cola, Tolaram Group, FMDQ and Guinness Nigeria.

The World Toilet Organization is a global non-profit organization committed to improving toilet and sanitation conditions worldwide. It was founded in 2001 with 15 members and has now grown to 151 member organizations in 53 countries.

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