Interestingly, on Tuesday, May 22, the Government of Liberia through the Ministries of Education and Health and Social Welfare as well partners, launched what they called the ‘National De-worm Program’ aimed at sensitizing Liberians particularly parents and students about the danger of worm disease and how it can be prevented.
The ministries and partners disclosed that the disease can easily be contracted from poor sanitation environments including drinking from open and unpurified wells and using of deplorable toilets.
The In Profile Daily yesterday conducted a survey within parts of Paynesville, Gardnerville and New Kru Town and discovered the proliferation of open and polluted wells in those communities.
The wells are where residents of the communities fetch water for drinking and other purposes.
During the survey, community residents gave this paper different reasons and accounts why they continue to use the wells regardless of their deplorable status, as well as how they feel whenever they drink and have a bath with the well water.
In the Du-port Road Community in Paynesville, a woman identified as Esther Flomo, who is believed to be in her 50s said: "Some of us know very well that the water we are using from this well is not safe for human consumption, but we cannot stop drinking and cooking with it because there is no other alternative".
She said during the Dry Season the water from the well can be too stink while it turns brown and yellow during the Rainy Season, adding that despite the condition of the well, it is catering for over five hundred persons in the community on a daily basis.
In the Pipe Line Road Community, a thirty-year-old man who begged not to be named described the conditions of wells in that community as worst.
He said when they fetch water from any of the wells they put it in hanging sand bags as a way of purifying it before using it for drinking.
"Look, In Profile Daily, let me tell you the truth, the water we drink is nothing but so- so sickness. At times when older people drink it their stomachs can be boiling. As for children, it can make them toilet abnormally and some of them can be weak or helpless. See my skin, it looks like frog skin, my skin was not looking like this when I moved in this community two years ago. I got this craw-craw skin from the water", the thirty-year-old man claimed.
An old lady identified only as Ma Dorh of the New Kru Town Community, explained that although the well in her community has never been chlorinated since she has been living there for 15 years now, she drinks from the well without experiencing health problem. She said that does not mean that the well water is safe for drinking, adding that she has strong resistance.
"This well is bad. Some living things that look like mosquitoes are always seeing in the water and I believe these are diseases that can kill. The children are most vulnerable, one little girl died recently from running stomach and most of the children suffer from skin diseases, and I am sure the kind water we use is responsible", the 60-year-old lady indicated.
Medical analysts told the In Profile Daily that the Liberian Government will have to design workable strategies to address the issue of water and sanitation if it is to meet the aspect of the Millennium Development Goals that has to do with the provision of safe drinking water.
They said in the absence of pipe borne water in almost of the communities in Monrovia and its environs, it would be appropriate were the government to embark on a campaign to chlorinate wells in various communities to help curtail the outbreak of water borne diseases in the country.
According to them, even if the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation completes the installation of the water pumps brought into the country, it would make little impact of the lives of the people as most of the communities have not been benefiting from the LWSC over the years.