In a bid to restore good environmental health practices in Nigeria, the Federal Government has approved capacity development for professionals in Environmental Health Sciences in the country.
Speaking at an event in Abuja to disseminate the new curricula for Environmental Health Technologists in accredited institutions in the country, the Minister of State for Environment, Ibrahim Usman Jibril, said it has become imperative to ensure that the quality of practitioners is brought in line with present global best standards.
Jibril recalled, several years back, how communities rallied to clean their surrounding at the mention of sanitary inspectors, saying “the sanitary inspectors were everywhere in the environment, inspecting houses, markets, schools, abattoirs etc, condemning meat, trees, protecting streams and prescribing the dos and don’ts in the environment. They are feared as much as they are loved.”
“Today the narrative has changed; the sanitary inspector is neither seen nor heard,” he added.
The minister who was represented by the Acting Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr Bolatito Obisong, said it had become necessary to upgrade the capacity of the professionals through the review of relevant educational curricula.
“The ministry is determined to work more closely with the council to ensure that schools and colleges that are ready to turn out quality manpower in environmental health will be granted accreditation to train environmental health practitioners at various levels,” he also said.
Also the Registrar, Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria (EHORECON), Dr Dominic Abonyi, has expressed optimism that the review would place environmental health profession where it belonged.
“We are thoroughly trained but our certificate was more of a bridge between professional and academic certificate. So by this liberation, those with National Diploma can gain direct entry into degree programmes.
“The council is also poised to review the curriculum of the technicians cadre so that they can take up the functions of the technologists who are about to join the research cadre,” Abonyi stated.
The Executive Secretary, National Board for Technical Education, Dr Adamu Kazaure, represented by an assistant director in the board, Mrs Helen Odutan, said the new curricula would improve the standard of the profession.
Source: Daily Trust