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‘50pc of Sindh’s people suffering from waterborne, sanitation-related diseases’

By Our Correspondent
November 20, 2018

Marking ‘World Toilet Day with the 2018 theme ‘Toilets and Nature, the Pathway to Neat and Clean Sindh’, speakers at an event said on Monday more than 50 per cent of the people were suffering from diseases related to water and sanitation due to the lack of proper sanitation in the Sindh province.

The Strengthening Participatory Organisation (SPO) Karachi with collaboration of WaterAid organised the event in various government officials and civil society activists, youth academics, local government representatives from Lyari, Malir and Thatta districts participated.

The event aimed at intervening in the WASH sector to save humans form water-related diseases and health-related expenditures at household and government levels. Faheem Junejo, director for local government, emphasised the need to enhance awareness among every section of society to change the behaviour of the masses for Open Defecation Free-Sindh.

As per the Sindh Sanitation Policy 2017, 13 districts and 400 villages in prioritised districts will be intervened for the Open Defecation Free-targeted districts and villages in Sindh, he said. “Women suffer most due to the lack of public toilets in markets, bus stations and where there people gather mostly that result in violation of their dignity and access to fundamental facility,” he said.

He said the provincial government had set targets that seemed more ambitious to achieve than given in Sindh Sanitation Policy 2017. Atur Das Sajnani, project coordinator for SDGs Unit P &D, said that after the end of MDGs in 2015, seventeen SDGs were introduced. “One hundred forty-three countries set goals and 17 goals were identified and targets were set with indicators. Sustainable development Goal (SDG) covers every aspect of the development caseload, including education, health, poverty and many more,” he said.

Six goals were identified as priority goals out of 17 goals in the sectors of education, water and sanitation, environment and a few others, he said. Nuzhat Shirin, Sindh Commission on the Status of Women chairperson, said that WASH and women were cross-cutting themes and their relationship had great significance for more developed Sindh in respect to the WASH sector. “We would be looking for support from government and civil society stakeholders for proper legislation and implementation pertaining to the solution of the issues and challenges being encountered by the women of Sindh in WASH sector,” she said.