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SON plans new standards to curb open defecation

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Director, Lagos Environmental Services, Dr. Iyabo Philips (left); Director of Standards, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Mrs Chinyere Egwuonwu and Director Planning, Research and SON Director, Statistics, Dr. Justin Nickaf during the National Mirror Committee (NMC) on ISO PC 305 sustainable non sewered sanitation system in Lagos.

New standards that provide solution to the issue of a sustainable and affordable sanitation as well as alleviate the problem of open defecation are underway.

Known as International Standards Organisation (ISO) PC 305 and ISO PC 318 on Sustainable non- sewered sanitation system and Community scale resource oriented sanitation treatment system; the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) is planning the standards.

Reports indicate that ISO 305 gives assurance to manufacturers of non-sewered sanitation systems, governments, regulators and end users that the non-sewered facilities they use are safe, reliable and of good quality.

Speaking at the meeting of National Mirror Committee (NMC) on ISO PC 305 sustainable non sewered sanitation system, last week, SON Director General, Osita Anthony Aboloma in Lagos, explained that ISO PC 305 was established at the Technical Management Board (TMB) resolution in May 2016 to provide a standard solution to the issue of a sustainable and affordable sanitation that will alleviate the problem of open defecation.

“ISO PC 318 Community scale resource oriented sanitation treatment systems has just been formed. Bringing together international experts, it will build on the information and expertise gathered to develop IWA 28, a major step to help realize the potential of such technology and, ultimately save lives.

“IWA 28, Faecal sludge treatment units – Energy independent, prefabricated, community – scale resource – recovery units – Safety and performance, will help to facilitate the commercialisation and expansion of such treatment units into the market, making them safer and more accessible to those who need them,” he said.

Aboloma who was represented by the Director of Standards, Mrs Chinyere Egwuonwu stated that the purpose of the standardization work is to enable the development of standards along the sanitation system designed to address basic sanitation needs and promote economic, social and environmental sustainability.

The highpoint of the event is the inauguration of the committee, which will mirror the activities of these two ISO technical committees and to establish Nigeria’s position in the ISO draft Standards on Sanitation systems and Services through a consensus of your input.

He said: “The established position will be further harmonized with other inputs from the rest of NSBs at the ISO Central Secretariat. The final draft Standards elaborated will be further circulated for comments and final voting to establish the Standards.

He charged the committee headed by the Dr. Iyabo Philips, Director, Lagos Environmental Services Department of the Ministry of Environment to make contributions, which will ensure that the standards reflect Nigeria’s position to facilitate its adoption as a National Standards to provide the necessary confidence for engagements.

“The benefits of participation and adoption of these international Standards will among other things provide a basis for confidence, transparency and continuity in businesses.

“It will also provide global best practices in the environmental sector; promote international trade through removal of technical barrier to trade (TBT) as well as ensure sustainable economic and environmental development,” he said.

The SON DG declared that the committee has a dual functions, as a National Mirror Committee and Technical Committee on Sustainable non sewered sanitation system and community scale resource oriented sanitation treatment systems.

“As a Mirror Committee, you will be responsible for establishing Nigeria’s Position on issues relating to the activities of the ISO PC 305 and ISO PC 318, while as Technical Committee, you will be responsible for adopting the ISO PC 305 and ISO PC 318 Standards as National Standards.”

Aboloma urged officials from municipal sanitation organisations to encourage their governments to particularly consider the adoption and implementation of the community scale resource oriented sanitation system in particular the Omni processor piloted in Dakar, Senegal to not only treat faecal and waste matter safely but generate water and electricity in the country.


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