A pleasant environment is a hazard free and promotes healthful living, is a fundamental right of all Nigerians. There is an increasing national consciousness on the need for judicious management of the Nigerian environment in a sustainable manner.

Therefore, ensuring improved Environmental Sanitation standards has become high on the political agenda of Government in the current democratic dispensation. This is demonstrated in the creation of the Federal Ministry of Environment to address amongst other things, the problems of poor Environmental Sanitation and is expected to engender improved productivity and foster equitable share of the job and joy of national economic development.

There cannot be a healthy nation without a healthy environment. Scientists have warned over the years that an unhealthy population and a degraded environment will hinder progress towards development goals. In Nigeria, there is now a greater understanding of the principal threats to the environment and public health. These are associated with a variety of factors, including those related to poor Environmental Sanitation.

The Environmental Sanitation related diseases exacerbate poverty by diminishing productivity and household income. In addition, the national cost of lost productivity, reduced educational potential and huge curative health costs constitute a major drain on the local and national economy. Besides, a dirty environment with its attendant health consequences, prevailing in most of our cities, can discourage tourists/investors and undermine the economic benefit of tourism to the country. Consequently, wide-ranging actions are required to solve Environmental Sanitation problems in order to reduce and avert their adverse health, economic and developmental effects.

 The National Council on Environment reiterated at its meetings in Kano and Ilorin in years 2000 and 2003 respectively, that the House to House Sanitary Inspection should be re-introduced to detect nuisances and proffer solutions for their abatement. The House to House Sanitary Inspection (Sanitary Inspection of Premises) is the bedrock of Environmental Sanitation as it covers most of its facets.

This National Environmental Sanitation Policy is developed in accordance with the National Policy on Environment (1989), Millennium Development Goals (MDG), World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) targets and the aims of the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) initiatives. The Policy is also in line with the goals of the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS) in the creation of wealth, employment and poverty alleviation. The National Policy aims at providing sound Environmental Sanitation, which shall assure sustainable environment and protection of human health. The consequent programmes shall improve public health and optimise the impacts of the huge investments in the health sector.
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