Nigeria loses N500b on poor sanitation yearly, says group
Marketing Director (MD) of Reckitt Benckiser (RB), West Africa, Silivrili Oguzhan has reiterated that about 1.3 per cent which translates to N500 billion of the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) is wasted because of poor sanitation.
The money he said is wasted because of hygiene problems such as open defecation and hospital expenditure as a result of preventable sanitation disease among others.
According to him, the huge sum could be used to support the boost of the country’s economy in areas like job creation and infrastructure.
Oguzhan, who was speaking at the Grand Finale of the Dettol Clean Nigeria Campaign in Lagos noted that 80 per cent of preventable diseases like diarrhea, which constitute a major part of the cost of poor sanitation happens indoors at homes.
No child should die of a preventable disease such as diarrhea, he said “and that is why we are advocating a healthy home through best hygienic practices to the grassroots.”
The Dettol clean Nigeria campaign, which was launched in March, was geared towards projecting Nigeria towards a germ-free nation.
The public awareness campaign, according to the RB’s marketing director has managed to reach more than a million people in five cities, Abuja, Ibadan, Port – Harcourt, Lagos and Kano.
The campaign team at its grand finale was at the National Stadium, Surulere in Lagos to clean the surfaces of the indoor sports hall (basket ball arena) with the new Dettol Multi Surface Cleaner, which is the first of its kind in the country with 10 times effectiveness.
Oguzhan told journalists that the campaign is only one step to a long journey, “but the number one priority is to promote best hygienic practices across Nigeria because we need to safe the lives of our children,” he added.
He however, cautioned the public against using the new product for skin saying it is not a skin product and people should desist from bathing with it for it is strictly a surface cleaner.
Also speaking at the event was Chairman, Committee of Health, Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr. Shegun Olulade who recapped the efforts of the state in achieving good sanitation through the cutting of waste by its PSP.
Olulade pointed out that though there are penalties for contravening environmental laws in the State, they still urge Lagosians to imbibe
the culture of good sanitation towards healthy living,
He however, condemned the non-compliance of some Lagosians to the environmental laws and cited the instance of ‘bad eggs’ that ignore the Thursdays market cleaning.
“We are still sensitizing the public, but enforcement of penalties might be applied where necessary, “he noted.
In his address, Managing Director, RB, Rahul Murgai stated that the campaign is in furtherance of the legacy of Dettol’s safe a child every minute because many children die yearly because of preventable diseases.
“And we want to ensure we have a healthy Nigeria through this campaign,” he added.