On August 3, 2021 during its 106th Regular Session, the Sangguniang Bayan enacted Ordinance No. 479 or the Zero Open Defecation Ordinance of Midsayap.

Councilor Vivencio D. Deomampo, Jr., principal author of Ordinance No. 479, said that the objectives of the said ordinance are to institutionalize the promotion of Zero Open Defecation (ZOD) Programs and to safeguard public health and well-being of all the constituents of the Municipality towards a sustainable sanitation programs and practices.

Under Ordinance No. 479, the Municipal WaSH (MWASH) Council was created and shall act as the policy-making and coordinating body. The MWASH will also conduct barangay verification with the Provincial WASH-TWG for ZOD Certification.

Provided also in the ordinance is the Creation of a Barangay Sanitation Control Team (BSCT) in every component barangays of the Municipality. The BSCT shall lead in the full implementation and observance of the Zero Open Defecation (ZOD) Program in their respective barangays.

The following acts are declared unlawful, prohibited and punishable by this ordinance; 1) every household is mandated or required to put up/establish a hygienic and sanitary toilet; 2) defecating in open or public places as defined in Section IV of the ordinance; 3) throwing, leaving or disposing fecal in open or public places. Moreover, diapers and used sanitary napkins shall likewise be covered by this ordinance, and 4) willful disobedience to the lawful orders and notices issued by the BSCT.

Fines and penalties for violators of this ordinance are as follows; First Offense – P200.00, Second Offense – P500.00, Third Offense – P1000.00, and Succeeding Offenses – P2,500.00 and or of not less than   Fifteen (15) days nor more than thirty (30) days at the sound discretion of the court.

Incentives shall be taken from the collected fines and penalties. Likewise, awards shall be given as assistance through material support to a barangay who satisfactorily complies and certified as Zero Open Defecation. These materials shall be used to improve their sanitation status from basic sanitation (G1) to Sustainable sanitation (G3)”, said Councilor Deomampo.

A barangay who satisfactorily complies and certified as Zero Open Defecation shall be awarded an assistance-in-kind through a project from the 20% Economic Development Fund (EDF) of the Local Government Unit of Midsayap through a project related to Zero Open Defecation in a form of materials or facility/ies.

Vice Mayor Manuel Rabara said that the enactment of this ordinance will empower the local government unit to move communities from open defecation status to sustainable sanitation.