Babura Local Government Area of Jigawa State has enacted a bye-law requiring intending grooms to have toilets in their houses before taking their brides home.
The local government said the law was made to check rampant open defecation, which is linked to outbreaks of diseases and cases of rape in the area.
Speaking on Radio Freedom, the chairperson of the council, Lawan Isma’il, said the law followed complaints by residents against open defecation.
Mr Isma’il also said open defecation is against the religion and culture of residents of the state.
Under the new law, council officials must certify that the intended matrimonial home has a toilet before marriage is permitted.
Mr Isma’il said all the relevant security agents have been notified to ensure compliance with the bye-law, including the arrest of defaulters.
He said traditional rulers have also been tasked to ensure the bye-law is understood and complied with across the council area.
The Nigerian government has often stated a commitment to ending open defecation in the country by 2025, in line with the revised global target set by the United Nations.
The federal government and the UNICEF had certified 14 local government areas as Open Defecation Free (ODF) in Jigawa State.
The Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, presented ODF certificates to the affected local governments. They are Gagarawa, Birniwa, Guri, Sule-Tankarkar, Gwiwa, Kiyawa, Dutse, Buji, Birnin Kudu, Taura, Kafin Hausa, Auyo and Jahun.
The areas acquired the status after over three million families in over 40,000 communities in the areas met the requirement of ODF protocol for hygiene promotion, the official earlier said.
According to the minister, conditions for attaining the ODF status include: communities must have eliminated open defecation by 100 per cent toilet use and increased ownership and sustainability of hygiene sanitation services.
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