Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | 69 percent of Kampala residents still use unsafe toilets, according to figures released by Kampala Capital City Authority-KCCA.
These include places where one can easily get infected; they are not lined and less water from the toilet can freely enter the earth around and do not have a smooth floor that permits easy cleaning. With an approximate resident population of 2 million people, about 1.38 million people in Kampala fall under this category.
KCCA executive director Dorothy Kisaka says at least one percent, translating into about 20,000 Kampala residents still practice open defecation, a practice that exposes the population to diseases like diarrhea and cholera. She observes a need for a mind change such that people can manage their waste better.
However, the authority has started a Kampala sanitation improvement and financing strategy to guide them on planning and investment towards achieving equitable and universal access to improved sanitation and hygiene.
The strategy addresses all aspects of the sanitation chain including containment, emptying and transport, treatment of faecal sludge and wastewater and resource recovery and re-use. It seeks to improve the safe management of faecal sludge and sewerage along the entire sanitation chain in Kampala by 2030.
Jude Byansi, the KCCA manager for Water and Sanitation says they have partnered with organisations like Water for People to help residents construct standard toilets and improve waste disposal practices. He says that until now, a number of residents still use toilets for dumping garbage which affects the environment.
He says they have also continued with the Weyonje project that seeks to sensitize the public on good sanitation practices. Research indicates that of the 162 wells in Kampala, only two have safe water for drinking.
KCCA Director of Health and Environment, Daniel Okello Ayen says they also plan to connect more toilets to the sewer line since currently, about 94 percent of residents using safe toilets are not connected to the sewer line. Yet KCCA has the capacity to collect only 70 percent of faecal sludge in Kampala.
The rest is left to use private emptiers some of whom use rudimentary and unsafe methods like using jerrycans to empty toilets without wearing proper gear. KCCA plans to construct more public toilets in Kampala to cater for their day population estimated at 4 million people.
Water for People country director Cate Zziwa Nimanya says they intend to construct about 750 standard toilets in Kampala. She says they are working with Housing Finance Bank and Post Bank to extend subsidized loans to landlords to construct standard toilets.
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