PESHAWAR - Speakers at a conference on preservation of water have urged the people to use clean drinking water, avoid contaminating the natural water resources and save themselves from various fatal diseases.
These views were expressed by representatives of Water Aid Mohammad Shahid and Ajmal Shah Yousufzai, while speaking at a press conference at the Peshawar Press Club on Saturday. They said our people were least bothered to take serious the significance of clean water, importance of improved sanitation system and setting up of toilets in houses and other commercial buildings.
Referring to the facilities in government-run-schools in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, they said that 42 per cent of schools did not have toilets and the children were forced to stay at homes due to this problem.
They said Pakistan was the only country where there was no law about the ownership of water and thus the people were misusing lavishly without keeping in view the needs of others.
They also stressed the need for provision of clean water, saying that Rs120 billion were used every year on treatment of water-born diseases. Of the total amount, they said, some Rs55 to Rs80 billion were spent on treatment of diarrhea and related health complications.
They pointed out that there was no sanitation law for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the people were living in unhygienic condition and using contaminated water in routine.
A water and sanitation programme expert of Integrated Regional Support Programme(IRSP) Mardan Majid Ali Khan said that national sanitation policy was still pending and after approval of the 18th constitutional amendment it was a provincial subject but the provincial government was least bothered to pay heed towards it.
He said that it was the duty of Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED) and Town Municipal Administrations (TMAs) to ensure spending of the relevant budget on the schemes of public welfare, provide clean drinking water to communities, construct the sanitation system and create hygienic environment for the people.