Water Department Closes Contaminated Boreholes in Ntoroko

1404 Views Ntoroko, Uganda

In short
The closure follows last months assessment on water from boreholes in the district, which showed that the water is contaminated with human waste. The contaminated water sources are found in the areas of Karugutu, Itoojo and Kanara Sub Counties.

Ntoroko district water department has closed 43 boreholes in the district after it was discovered they are contaminated with fecal matter.

The closure follows last month's assessment on water from boreholes in the district, which showed that the water is contaminated with human waste. The contaminated water sources are found in the areas of Karugutu, Itoojo and Kanara Sub Counties.

Barbara Isoke, the acting Ntoroko District Water Officer says that all the contaminated boreholes have been labeled so that the community stops fetching water from them unknowingly. She explains the department was concerned after several cases of typhoid were reported in Karugutu and Kanara Sub Counties.  

She adds that only water recommended for human consumption is the one supplied by National Water and Sewerage Corporation because it is thoroughly tested.

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Karugutu town council health officer Ramathan Mwesige attributes the consumption of unclean water to rampart open defecation including improper waste disposal. He observes that the intake of contaminated water is likely to spread water borne disease among residents.

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However the decision to close the boreholes has angered some residents who have been relying on the boreholes as their only source of water.

Richard Businge, a resident of Karugutu town council says that the district should first provide alternative water sources before closing boreholes. He says that tap water provided by National Water and Sewerage Corporation is expensive. 

Businge explains that a jerrican of water costs 200 Shillings yet on average he uses five jerricans of water each day, which is too costly for his family. 

Charles Muhindo, another resident wonders how they will survive without boreholes since they are easily accessible in the community. He wants the authorities to instead supply them with water purification tabs.

In the 2015 Sector Performance Report, the Ministry of Water and Environment attributed the poor state of sanitation and hygiene in the Rwenzori region to open defection, limited funding for sanitation at local government level, and the limited community access to financial services to fund sanitation improvements.

 

About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.