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7 out of 10 people in Upper East Region practice open defecation

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The prevalence of open defecation in the Upper East Region remains alarming, with current statistics indicating that 68.4% of the population engages in this unhygienic practice.

This figure underscores the urgent need for comprehensive interventions and community-driven solutions to promote toilet usage and eliminate open defecation.

Tackling issues surrounding this on the Daybreak Upper East show on Wednesday, July 3, Juventus Asayuure, Regional Environmental Health Officer, shed light on the persistent issue of open defecation in the Upper East Region.

He highlighted several underlying reasons contributing to this concerning practice, which affects a significant portion of the population.

Mr. Asayuure identified the vast lands as a main contributing factor to open defecation in the region. “Key among them is that we have a vast kind of land where people feel ‘instead of putting up a toilet, I’ll rather go into the bush’.”

He explained that some people feel when they put the apparatus list together, the toilet is not part of it. This makes them put up every infrastructure they need as a household and exempt toilet facilities.

Changing these entrenched behaviours remains a challenge. As Mr. Asayuure pointed out, some people feel it’s useless to change because they’ve practised open defecation for so long without seeing any difference. However, he noted a positive trend among those who have adopted proper sanitation practices, recognizing the benefits of improved hygiene and health outcomes. Community education plays a crucial role in this endeavour.

He added that vulnerable households, when identified, receive targeted support to facilitate the transition to hygienic sanitation practices.

He stressed that strategies must adapt to the unique dynamics of each community to achieve meaningful results.

He further expressed optimism that with continued education, support, and community engagement, progress can be made towards achieving clean and hygienic environments for all residents of the Upper East Region.

Source: A1Radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Gifty Eyram Kudiabor|Bolgatanga

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