LGUs urged to formulate, implement water and sanitation programs
Iloilo (24 February) -- The local government units and other stakeholders for health and sustainable water are urged to formulate and implement sanitation programs in their areas as a way of recognizing the critical importance of sanitation in the country's development goals.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, said that in connection with the observance of 2008 as International Year of Sanitation, a national search for the Barangay with Best Sanitation Practices will be undertaken, where the LGUs are expected to showcase their best examples of water supply, provision of sanitary toilet facilities and other initiatives related to environmental sanitation.
Duque said based on the 2006 Field Health Information System of the DOH, safe water supply in the country reached 83 percent while sanitation coverage was at 75.4 percent.
He said the state of the water and sanitation coverage in the country is reflected by the leading causes of morbidity and mortality, with diarrhea still ranking as the number one or two cause of morbidity for the past 20 years and one of the top five causes of child mortality.
The observance of the International Year of Sanitation as declared by the United Nations General assembly recognizes the importance of Sanitation to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The country's MDG for the year 2015 is to ensure that 86.8 percent of the population will have an access to safe water and 73.8 percent of the population will have access to sanitary toilet facility.
Duque said even halfway through 2015, there are already considerable progress indicated by increased access to safe water and sanitary toilets. (PIA 6) [top]