The United Nations Children Funds (UNICEF) on Thursday said that 800 communities in Katsina State would soon be certified open-defecation free.
The UNICEF Field Officer, Ms Padmovatahe Yelda, disclosed this in Katsina while distributing operational vehicles to eight local government areas of the state under the Sanitation, Hygiene and Water Supply (SHAWN) project.
She said that SHAWN had reached a total of 589,500 people by assisting them to have access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities.
The officer further revealed that the people were also enlightened on the dangers associated with the ugly trend of open defecation.
According to her, 19 local governments in the state are currently participating in the programme.
Yelda said that the aim of the programmme was to reduce water related diseases like diarrhoea, which accounts for high mortality rate, particularly among the children.
She commended the state government for the settlement of its N380 million counterpart funding.
Yelda also said that 70,000 acute malnourished children were treated in the state through the Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) programme.
She, therefore, stressed the need for political commitment from the governments on issues that affect children and women.
Responding, the State Governor, Alhaji Aminu Masari said that his administration would continue to put in place programmes and projects that would alleviate the suffering of children and women.
Masari, who expressed concerns over the condition under which some children in rural areas were trained, solicited the support of stakeholders towards improving their living condition.