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Kuching Declaration signed at World Toilet Expo

KUCHING: A declaration was signed in conjunction with the 15th World Toilet Summit and Expo 2016 yesterday to consolidate the commitment to ensure access to water and sanitation for all as outlined by the United Nation Sustainable Development Goals.

Dubbed the `Kuching Declaration`, it was signed by the founder of World Toilet Organisation, Jack Sim, and was presented to state Local Government Minister Datuk Professor Dr Sim Kui Hian and Kuching City South mayor Datuk James Chan.

The declaration pledged commitment in addressing all aspects of the sanitation ecosystem, providing accessible infrastructure, behavioural change programmes and strengthening the socio-political will.

It also pledged to celebrate the United Nations World Toilet Day every Nov 19 in order to engage the international community, and ensure good sanitation remain a priority to the people.

According to Sim in his closing speech for the summit at Imperial Hotel yesterday, it was vital for delegates to share their experiences and knowledge, and apply it when they return home to their own countries.

“We do not want this summit to be just another conference where people discuss the theory only. The practical must follow up soon after to compliment the knowledge gained here,” said Sim.

Sim added that as Sarawak embraced more tourists from its expanded tourism products and better air connectivity, the mentality on public toilets should change too.

“We need to address the issue of mentality first and we, as citizens, should have a first class mentality before we have a clean toilet. Good facilities compliment good attitude,” he said.

The summit held for the first time in Malaysia from Oct 27 is a platform for delegates to share the best sanitation practices, and discuss how regional bodies and associations can contribute to solving crises.

It also looks at issues such as rural-urban migration and its impact of sanitation infrastructure, acting as a platform to share the latest sanitation technologies.

Also present at the event was Tourism Arts and Culture Permanent Secretary Datu Ik Pahon Joyik.

29 Oct 2016
Source : The Borneo Post