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Migori County Drag Behind In Use of Latrines

The department of health in Migori County has described the region as ‘doing poorly in the use of toilets.’

The low up take of toilet use by the local people in some parts of the County is a big worry to the health experts who say that the region, for a long time now, has remained a major hub for opportunistic diseases like cholera.      

According to the County Executive Committee member in charge of health docket, Julius Nyerere, the area boasts only 30 per cent latrine/toilet coverage.

This situation, he says, is exposing the local population to the risks of contracting diseases that attack as a result of poor hygiene standards.

Areas facing serious lack of latrines are Nyatike, Kuria West, Kuria East, Awendo, Suna West Sub Counties and the remote parts of Uriri Constituency.

Sadly, reports indicate that most homes in the region lack working pit latrines/toilets forcing owners to use bushes and sugarcane plantations to answer their long calls.

Some of the residents deliberately refuse to use pit latrines/toilets over some queer traditional beliefs.

“We are disturbed that majority of rural homes in this county lack working pit-latrines or toilets forcing household to take the route of unsafe disposal of faeces, a move that has seriously compromised sanitation levels in this county,” stressed Nyerere.

But health officials have been emphatically in fury with those out to be against the use of toilet for unreasonable belief that mixing faeces make them sick and ruin the smooth growth of their families.

According to beliefs by a clique of traditional conservatives and teachings by certain queer churches in the region, it is a taboo to mix human wastes, a move that will automatically attract punishment of various magnitudes.

However, the beliefs have been dismissed by health experts as unscientific and retrogressive acts that are compromising sanitation efforts in the area.

Consequently, experts have vowed to invoke the Kenyan public health laws on sanitation to compel all the people in the area to construct latrines or face the full force of the law.

Already massive campaigns by the local County government to sensitise the masses on the need to own a working pit-latrine or toilet is ongoing and the efforts aims at increasing latrine coverage in the region to 100 per percent.

The trend of unsafe disposal of human faeces is also worse within towns and markets in the region and has been identified to be the cause of spread of acute diarrhea, dysentery and other waterborne diseases.

By George Agimba

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