Five new LGAs have been added to the list of Open Defecation-Free (ODF) LGAs in the country. They are Garki, Kaugama, Miga and Yankwashi in Jigawa State, and Aguata in Anambra State.
This brings to 83 the number of LGAs in the country now free from having its populace defecating in the open.
At the monthly meeting of the National Task Force Group on Sanitation (NTFGS) in Abuja, the members unanimously agreed to declare the five LGAs ODF after meeting the criteria in the ODF Protocol.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that before attaining the ODF status, communities would have eliminated open defecation and imbibed total sanitation practices which include personal, environmental and domestic hygiene.
The communities would have also had 100 per cent toilet usage and increased ownership and sustainability of hygiene and sanitation services.
The Chairman of the NTFGS, Mr Emmanuel Awe, said the validation exercise was part of the processes to monitor and encourage communities on behavioural change in hygiene promotion.
According to him, states must show more commitment in ensuring that more LGAs are ODF in a sustainable manner.
Giving an overview of processes for the Jigawa LGAs to be declared ODF, Mr Peters Ojonuba, the Validation Team Lead, said it was impressive to see the commitment of the state in improving access to sanitation.
Ojonuba said no faeces were sighted in the 414 communities, being 20 per cent of the 2,070 communities in the four LGAs. (NAN)