Universally, safe drinking water and sanitation have been recognised as essential bloodlines for human life, dignity and poverty eradication, However, these bloodlines have been identified as luxury especially to the poor.
Globally, SDG has set common ground to improve human development through the attainment of Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG6) for improved drinking water and sanitation respectively in 2030.
There might be a serious constitutional challenge in the attaining the SDG’s (Clean Water and Sanitation ) targets in 2030. This has to do with getting the appropriate sustainable means for sustainable drinking water supply and sanitation service delivery in the country.
The responsibilities of the provision of water supply and sanitation are shared among the three tiers of government, federal, states and local government. Inter-states water resources regulations are the responsibility of the Federal government; water supply and sanitation service provisions are the responsibilities of the various States government and the Local Government Areas.
Constitutionally, in Nigeria, sanitation services are strictly the responsibilities of the Local Government Areas. The challenge, therefore, is to create a good synergy between the levels of government to deliver sustainable drinking water supply and sanitation services to the people of Nigeria.
The Honourable Minister Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman Adamu on Wednesday 14th August 2018 signed Partnership Agreement for Expanded Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (PEWASH) with Kano State Government. Signing the agreement, the Minister stated that the Sustainable Development Goals targets for Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene have heightened the challenge as it is more demanding than MDGs target. Continuing, Engr. Adamu said that it was against this background that the Ministry is taking a proactive step towards implementing programmes and projects that will enable Nigeria to meet the SDGs-WASH target.
The government need to;
Make provision of equitable access to water, sanitation and hygiene services.
Strengthen government efforts to eradicate the practice of open defecation.
Strengthen tailored community approaches to total sanitation including Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) in rural, peri-urban and riverine settings.
Strengthen national and subnational bodies’ capacity to develop and implement equitable and gender-sensitive WASH policies, strategies and guidelines.
Ensure the sustainability of water services in rural communities.
It is high time the government Prioritise WASH in Nigeria