United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has said that more people have access to cell phones in Nigeria than they have access to toilets.
Quoting a 2018 report by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Zaid Jurji, chief of WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), UNICEF, said 140 million people in Nigeria have cell phones, while only 97 million have access to improved sanitation.
Mr Jurji who spoke at a two-day media dialogue on European Union Niger Delta Water Project, in Port Harcourt, noted that the sanitation sector in Nigeria is severely under-resourced, as sanitation is only 19 per cent of WASH budget.
He further added that only 39% Nigerians use an improved toilet that is not shared by more than one household.
Over 46 million people still practice open defecation in Nigeria, with 32 percent living in rural areas and 12 percent in urban areas.
This figure is far from the Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG) target by 2030, which aims at achieving universal access to drinking water, sanitation and hygiene.
In his remarks, Lai Mohammed, minister of Information and Culture, who was represented by Toye Falayi, principal information officer of the ministry, urged media partners to sustain advocacy for improve water sanitation and hygiene.