MONROVIA, LIBERIA-On November 19, Liberia will join its global counterparts to World Toilet Day; a day celebrated to inspire action to tackle the global sanitation crisis and help achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG 6), which promises sanitation for all by 2030.
Ahead of the day, a conglomeration of civil society organizations, the CSO Committee on WASH and Climate Change, is calling on President George Weah to sign the Open Defecation Free (ODF) RoadMap.
The ODF Roadmap is a document aim to end open defecation in Liberia by 2025. It was developed in 2019 by the Liberian Government, with support from partners.
The WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program (JMP) report of 2017 showed that 35.2 percent of the population in Liberia defecates in the open, with the rural area having 59.8 percent while urban is 17.9 percent.
In a bid to draw government’s attention to fast-track the necessary changes, the CSO Committee on WASH and Climate Change on Thursday, November 11, 2021, presented petitions to some members of the WASH Legislative Caucus, seeking their intervention.
Members of the organization presented one of the petitions to Grand Bassa County District Four Representative, Vincent Willie, and another to Grand Bassa County Senator, Jonathan Kaipay.
The organization says signing of the ODF RoadMap will encourage donors and international partners to increase support to the WASH sector.
“Since the document was prepared, it was done in the spirit that the president is the right person to sign that document, so we can have the needed political will,” Timothy Kpeh, Coordinator of the group said.
Also speaking, a representative of the Women NGO Secretariat of Liberia (WONGOSOL) highlighted the plight of women affected by the lack of toilet.
Finda Sali said: “This is a burning issue, when it comes to women. Talking about toilet, women suffer it most. Man can stand anywhere and urinate, but woman can’t stand anywhere to urinate…so we are asking you to use your influence to work for us.”
Responding, Representative Willie and Senator Kaipay assured the organization members that they will liaise with their colleagues at the Legislature to give the ODF Roadmap the require relevance.