Anambra State government has urged residents in the state to inculcate the habit of using soap or ash to wash hands, especially under running water for the sake of healthy living as Tuesday 15th October marks the Global Handwashing Day.
The Programme Manager, Anambra State Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA), Mr Emeka Okwuogu, who made the call while addressing journalists on 2019 Global Hand Washing Day celebration, said the mechanism would help to eliminate diseases in the society.
According to Okwuogu, “The celebration is an opportunity designed to test and replicate creative ways to encourage people to wash their hands at critical times. It reminds us that Handwashing with soap or ash is a vital part of cooking, eating and feeding.
“Handwashing with soap or ash is also among the most effective and inexpensive ways to prevent diseases. It can be thought as a ‘’ do it yourself’’ vaccine for prevention of diseases.
“Handwashing with soap or ash takes cognizance of critical times to wash hands such as after visiting the toilets, after cleaning or changing baby’s diapers, after playing, before eating, after counting money, after changing menstrual pads, after touching animals and so on,” he stated.
He, however, regretted that handwashing with soap or ash was seldom practised and not always easy to promote due to lack of knowledge of its health benefits.
“The celebration in Anambra will be a measure of sensitization of the people on ways of preventing the transmission of diseases such as diarrhoea, dysentery, intestinal worms, avian or swine flu, acute respiratory infections such as cold and catarrh, bronchitis among others.
Nigerian Tribune learnt that the theme for the 2019 Global handwashing Day is Clean Hands for All. Studies reveal that diarrheal diseases such as cholera and dysentery kill almost four million children yearly in developing counties and hands are the principal carriers of these diseases. Handwashing with water and soap or ash, not only reduces these mortalities but also enhances healthier living, free from such illnesses,” he noted.