Free Public Toilets Excite Voters, Bemuse Toilet Attendants

1585 Views Jinja, Uganda
Normal 0 false false false EN-GB X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 Spending a shilling on a public toilet service will soon be a dream in Jinja under proposed plans to make public lavatories free. President Museveni was recently quoted saying that effective November; all fees levied on public toilets should be abolished. This means all public toilet attendants will be deprived of the 200 shillings they have been charging on each user. The move has been welcomed by voters in Jinja most of who say this has been one of the itching issues that called for attention. Voters in Jinja have been at the forefront demanding for free public toilets as a social responsibility to the taxpayers. Jinja district has close to 100 public toilets. Adnand Kawooya, a councilor LC IV Jinja municipality, says free public toilets will prevent people from urinating in the streets and also help poorer citizens who cannot afford the 200 shillings charged for using a public lavatory. John Banyanga, a public toilet attendant in Jinja Taxi Park is however unhappy about the move. He claims that a free service could compromise sanitation. He says the toilet requires an average of two units of water per day; He uses 3,000 shillings for washing soap and requires a daily allowance of 6,000 for two weeks. John Banyanga, says if government is abolishing public toilet fees, it should put up a budget for paying those who clean and maintain the toilets. Kasifah Wairege, who holds the tender to run a public toilet in Jinja Bus Park, says people will lose jobs. Paul Mwiru, a member of the Forum for Democratic Change says the quest for free public toilets is a political gimmick that could fizzle out after the 2011 general elections. \\ Cue in "his design is to make..." Cue out "...these health centres." Hannington Basakana, Jinja LC V Chairman of says free public toilets cannot operate in Jinja. He says rural growth centres in Jinja have been allocated but need a lot to maintain them. Basakana says Jinja needs more toilets and more people to maintain them. \\ Cue in "if you want to..." Cue out "...faeces all over."//


About the author

Aldon Walukamba
Aldon Walukamba believes he was born to be a journalist. Uganda Radio Network's former Busoga region bureau chief is now in Kampala to continue to do what he loves.

Walukamba has been an active journalist since 2000. He was a radio presenter and producer at Radio Management Services (Busoga FM, All Karamoja FM between 2000 -2004). He also worked as a media trainer at United Media Consultants and Trainers UMCAT and Makerere Institute for Social Development MISD (2005-2007), before he joined Buddu Broadcasting Services as a News Editor and Producer, later Programmes Manager and Station Manager.

Walukamba's journalistic interests are in local government, news, human rights, agriculture, environment and politics. He is member of several professional societies and sports Institutions.