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Epidemic looms in Bauchi secondary school over poor toilet sanitation, water scarcity

Bauchi secondary school
Epidemic looms in Bauchi secondary school
Bauchi secondary school
Bauchi secondary school

Epidemic looms in Community Day Secondary School, Wunti Dada, located on the outskirts of Bauchi State over poor toilet sanitation and water scarcity.

FLYINGEZE BLOG correspondent, who visited the government-owned school weekend, observed that the surrounding areas of the uncovered four-room toilet facility were marred by scattered excreta.

The nauseating odour of urine and decomposing faeces could leave anyone struggling for breath.

FLYINGEZE BLOG reports that the Community Day Secondary School is one of the public schools in Bauchi battling with poor toilet sanitation.

The school hosts about 1,000 students at both the Junior and Secondary levels.

It’s one of the UBEC/SUBEB 2015 Projects.

Some of the students who spoke with our reporter described the poor toilet sanitation as worrisome.

A female student, who refused to disclose her identity, said, ”I have never used any of the school’s toilets because of their bad conditions. I used to go to my friend’s place which is just a stone’s throw from the school, while some of us go into the bush during or after school hours because we don’t want to contract diseases.”

Corroborating her, another female student, who also spoke under the condition of anonymity said: “The toilet and the backyard are really in a mess. I have a friend who stays nearby where I go to ease myself because I am scared of toilet infection.”

The female students appealed to the state government to help renovate the toilet facilities.

Also speaking In an interview with FLYINGEZE BLOG, some of the teachers said the deplorable conditions have not only impacted the overall hygiene and well-being of students but also posed serious challenges to the learning environment.

A teacher, who preferred to remain anonymous, disclosed that “The condition of the toilets in our school is appalling. They are not only unhygienic but also a breeding ground for various health issues. It’s disheartening to see students struggling with such necessities.”

She added, “The female students are suffering. Some of them if they say they want to urinate, they use that as an opportunity to avoid learning.

“Some of them see it as an opportunity not to come back, even when they come back, another period is gone. Some of them find it difficult to learn because they are not used to it.

“All the toilets here are in bad shape. Even houses close to the school have started complaining. And, there is no way we can stop them because we can’t allow them to urinate in their classrooms.”

Another teacher at the school, who spoke in confidence, said: ”We are endangered by unhygienic toilet conditions. As you can see, our toilet facilities here are more or less centres for disease distribution.

“Teachers and students cannot use the toilets. Those whose houses are nearby usually rush home to answer the call of nature.

”This affects learning because some pupils see it as an opportunity to avoid classes. They won’t come back to school once they are allowed to go home.”

The teacher, who led our reporter to the toilet area to see for himself, added: “We have four toilets here and they are all in bad condition. The only borehole available is also not functioning.”

Reacting, the school principal, Bala Hassan Wunti Dada admitted that though the present administration had tried in terms of infrastructure like building classes, the toilet infrastructures were inadequate.

In an interview with FLYINGEZE BLOG, he said the toilet facilities and the student’s furniture were urgent needs of the school.

“You know having good toilet facilities is very hygienic because if you don’t have good toilets, the health of the students and teachers is at stake. We have four toilets and they are all in bad condition,” he said.

Similarly, parents have shared their concerns about the toll this takes on their children.

One parent, Usman Wunti stated, “It’s disconcerting to think that our children are exposed to such unsanitary conditions. This not only affects their physical health but also creates an uncomfortable learning environment.”

Wunti expressed fears that the poorly maintained toilets can contribute to the spread of infections and diseases among students.

According to him, the discomfort and embarrassment students feel while using substandard facilities may hinder their focus on academics.

“Our children deserve a safe and clean environment for learning. It’s time for the relevant authorities to prioritise the improvement of school toilet facilities for the well-being of our future generation,” he added

According to findings, more than half of young girls who drop out of school in Nigeria do so due to poor water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) facilities.

A WASH-in-School report issued by the United Nations in 2018 revealed that about 50 percent of schools in Nigeria do not have basic water supply, sanitation, and toilet facilities.

According to the report, this implied that the brunt of the challenge of poor access to water facilities is borne by people on the lowest economic ladder and those living in rural areas and semi-urban areas.

It warned that children’s education and health were at risk due to a lack of decent WASH facilities in schools.

“As many as 50 percent of schools in Sub-Saharan Africa are without access to water. Access to water, sanitation and hygiene at school is also a matter of gender equality.

“Girls are more likely to miss lessons or to drop out completely once they start menstruating if their school does not have a decent toilet where they can change menstrual clothes in dignity and privacy.

“One in 10 adolescent girls in Africa miss school during their menstruation and eventually drop out due to lack of gender-friendly toilet facilities,” the report stated.

The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of SUBEB, Mohammed Abdullahi when contacted said the board is quite aware of the dilapidated toilets in the government-owned schools.

Abdullahi assured that “part of our action plan for the year will be the renovation of dilapidated classrooms and the construction of toilets, boreholes, and fences. We will also provide them with school gardens and sporting facilities.”

over poor toilet sanitation
over poor toilet sanitation

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