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Updated: Jun 24, 2020

One in four Nigerians — about 47 million people — practice open defecation, according to the World Health Organization and UNICEF's joint monitoring report. Some months ago, Oyo State Government revealed that it was putting in place measures to stop open defecation in the State, by providing mobile toilets and water in rural communities in the State but unfortunately nothing seems to have been done to date.

Yesterday 22nd June, the news that filled the air was the killing of 5-year-old Mujeeb by unknown persons in Tose area of Akinyele Local Government who left for the bush at the back of the house to defecate only to be hit with a shovel by the assailants who may have escaped into the bush afterward. The young boy was left in his own pool of blood, he died before his faint cry could get to the ears of his family. 

Had I known I would have asked him to defecate in the front of the house.”, Mujeeb’s mother kept on saying this statement and got me thinking how valid this is. Maybe the young boy will be alive if open defecation had been eradicated in the state, imagine staying safe in your house to comfortably ease yourself. It is sad that we could have avoided the gruesome death of Mujeeb if we didn’t fail to build mobile toilets in schools, communities, and bus-stops. 

Recall that barely a month now, three earlier cases of Grace Oshiagwu, Barakat Bello, and Azeezat Shomuyiwa in the same Akinyele Local Government Area were reported which prompted the new Commissioner of Police, Mr. Nwachuckwu Enwonwu to relocate to the local government. 

All these cases are avoidable only if the Government can take responsibility and act faster.

What are you doing differently today? - Aderonke Dairo

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