As part of efforts to achieve an organised market as well as food security sustainability, the Lagos State Government has taken its market hygiene advocacy to market leaders.
Addressing Market Leaders during the maiden edition of a one-day sensitization programme for Market leaders held at Ifako ijaiye Local Government Secretariat, Permanent Secretary, Office of Environmental Services, Omobolaji Gaji said the markets should be clean always, and a hygienic food handling process must be maintained to ensure socio-economic wellbeing.
Gaji said Lagos state had been the epicenter of diseases of public health importance since the 2014 Ebola case, Covid-19, Lassa fever and cholera establishing the associative link between the market environment, illnesses and diseases that threaten human existence.
The Permanent Secretary represented by Deputy Director Sanitation, Mrs Omoyeni Balogun observed that in the market environment there are social behaviours that impacts the aesthetic of the environment which includes improper display and storage of foods and food items, Indiscriminate dumping of refuse, adding that the emerging epidemic and pandemic threats that confront humanity have links to markets.
“Insanitary behaviours, Open defecation, littering and blocking the drainage system and more deface our markets and are threats to life and properties directly and indirectly” he said.
The Permanent Secretary said all foods items pass through the market environment and are exposed to both intrinsic and extrinsic high-risk factors of unhealthy practices in the market environment saying that the way food items are displayed can bring about contamination from environmental pollutants.
Gaji who frowned at indiscriminate refuse disposal under any guise reminded Lagosians especially market women and men to ensure that they sort their waste from the source saying that every stakeholder must be involved in the New environmental reforms.
In her welcome address, the representative of the Chairman Ifako Ijaiye Local Government Princess Mariam Bisi emphasized that Lagos is the economic hub of Nigeria, adding that the statement will not have any significant meaning without the market and stakeholders that monitor the market environment.
She appealed to market leaders in the Local Government to shun street trading and restrict all trading activities to the market, stressing that it is in the interest of all to respect the Lagos State and Local Government environmental laws.
Participants at the Orientation programme include market Men and Women, Environmental Health Officers as well as local government officials.
Lectures were delivered during the workshop on Food Hygiene, monitoring and Control, Waste Management, Water Security and quality, Drainage and flooding, and Pest and Diseases control in the market environment.
DIRECTOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS, MOE&WR
21st JULY, 2022.