November 5, 2023

Cholera: Ogun to conduct compliance exercise for table, sachet water producers

Dapo Abiodun

Governor Dapo Abiodun

By James Ogunnaike, Abeokuta

In its determination to get to the root cause of the recent cholera outbreak in some local government areas of the State, and prevent future occurrence, the Ogun State government is to conduct compliance exercise on all table and sachet water factories in the state.

The State Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Ola Oresanya made the announcement, during a stakeholders meeting comprising members of the Table Water And Beverages Producers Association of Nigeria, Ogun State chapter and officials of the Ministries of Environment, Health, as well as Industries, Trade and Investment at the Ministry of Environment Conference Room, State Secretariat, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.

Oresanya said the compliance exercise became necessary to address the environmental and hygienic negligence detected in their production processes which is in variance to their earlier certification by the National Agency For Food And Drug Administration And Control NAFDAC that resulted to the outbreak of cholera which claimed some lives while other were hospitalized.

“As responsible government, Oresanya said the state government will now conduct the compliance exercise to reinforce and domesticate their  NAFDAC certification in all the twenty local government areas of the state as the team will move to all water producing factories for on the spot assessment of their production processes. 

“The team will among others demand for routine microbial analysis results of their products, check the distance of their production boreholes to their and septic tanks, their operational environment as well as medical certificate of fitness of their products for human consumption”.

“For clarity, all registered and unregistered water producing factories will be visited and any one of them that fail the compliance exercise will be shut and will remain so until it passes the laid down procedures before it is opened for business in the public interest”, he added.

Oresanya therefore called on table and sachet water producuers to support the compliance exercise, saying that the state government is not out to witch hunt any of them, but safeguard the health of its citizens from preventable water borne diseases, and as well set a healthy standard for their products which have suffered from negative public acceptance in the aftermath of the outbreak of the disease.

Responding, the Chairman of the Table Water And Beverages Producers Association of Nigeria, Ogun State Chapter, Mr Femi Olukoga pledged his members support for the exercise, saying it will help the body to sanitize its ranks and weed out quacks whose activities are inimical to the well-being of residents of the state.