Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Hand washing has been described as one of the simplest ways to prevent the spread of any virus including the COVID-19 pandemic and ensure better health outcome for the people.
This came to the fore during the celebration of this year’s Global Hand Washing Day themed “Hand Hygiene for All” in Makurdi the Benue State capital.
The event which was organized
by United Purpose (UP) in collaboration with Eunice Spring of Life Foundation (ESLF) and supported by Benue
WASH Media Network, brought together people with disabilities including amputees, people with hearing impairment, as well as those in wheel chairs and on crutches.
Speaking during the occasion, State Technical Officer of UP, Shadrach Guusu, disclosed that over 150,000 children under five years of age die every year
from water and sanitation-related sickness in the country.
He however posited that proper hand washing had been identified to reduce the rate by fifty percent.
On his part, Programme Manager of ESLF, Tine Agernor, expressed the readiness of the Foundation to partner with relevant organizations that are determined to improve the wellbeing of the people stating that wife of the Governor, Dr. Eunice Ortom, was committed to touching lives of the less privileged.
On her part, General Manager, Benue State Rural Water Supply and
Sanitation Agency, (BEWASSA) Mrs. Torkwase lkyaator, who was represented by the Principal
Administrative Officer of the Agency, Bem Aluka, revealed that the state government was providing water in public places and rural areas to improve access to water.
She commended donor partners including UNICEF, UP, Water Aid, ESLF, among others for supporting hand washing to become a habit for all people of the State.
In a remark, Executive Secretary, Benue State Rehabilitation Board, Mrs. Hembadoon Gum, represented by Senior Administrative Officer of the Board, Alexander Mbakindev, thanked the organizers for including persons with disabilities in this year’s celebration.
State Coordinator of Society for Water and
Sanitation (NEWSAN), Joy ljuwo, said the Organisation was focusing on the
link between hand washing and food including food hygiene and nutrition.
In a remark, Chairman, Benue WASH Media Network, Babs Usigbe who was
represented by Secretary of the Network, Nancy Orshi, expressed the willingness of the network to
partner with organizations and programmes that would promote the practice of hand washing and hygiene.
celebration witnessed demonstration
of hand washing by all clusters while some participants, Jamaima Yaji, Samuel Nyikyaa, Jacob Gbenke, and Donald Ubagu said they have learnt a lot bothering on the need to know how best to wash their hands to be able to win the war against the COVID-19 pandemic.