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No latrines in Butemba,Fort Portal defines royalty

By Vision Reporter

Added 21st October 2013 01:36 PM

Today, we bring you profiles of Butemba town and Fort Portal municipality

No latrines in Butemba,Fort Portal defines royalty

Today, we bring you profiles of Butemba town and Fort Portal municipality

BUTEMBA TOWN

By Watuwa Timbiti and Nelson Kiva
trueIn the Make Uganda Clean campaign, Vision Group is profiling major urban centres in the country, highlighting their sanitation situation, culminating into being recognised. Today, we bring you profiles of Butemba town and Fort Portal municipality

Although there are efforts from the town authorities to keep Butemba town in Kyankwanzi district clean, the residents seem to be the enemies of these efforts considering the findings of a Vision Group survey. Butema attained town council status in 2010 upon carving Kyankwanzi from Kiboga district.

According to the respondents the town has a cleaning schedule, but dustbins are insufficient, attracting average satisfaction from the residents, a high proportion of the residents (89%) report having seen someone litter rubbish in the last three months.

Additionally, apart from the town being rated as polluted, just 5% of the respondents report to have avoided pollution activities like burning. Only 40% of the respondents report avoiding littering. Worse still, only 20% have participated in the clean-up exercise of the town. Similarly, an insignificant 10% have sensitised people about living in a clean environment and 25% have done nothing to improve cleanliness.

Looking at the town’s budget, more resources have to be committed to sanitation, for instance of the sh397m budget for this financial year, only sh12m is allocated to cleaning and sh3.5m for beautification. The town clerk, Betty Nankindu, says even though the town council is faced with financial limitations, there is a cleanliness campaign every two weeks. “Its impact is visible and the general public has embraced the campaign.

We slash, collect garbage and sensitise the public on good hygiene and sanitation practices,” she explains. On the other hand, most of the town depends on the national electricity grid and a high percentage of the respondents have seen street lights in the town. The highway is the only tarmacked road, the other are either levelled or murram, with potholes. The town council is said to have a population of 7,785 people. There are 13 primary schools, three secondary schools and three health centres.

However, on loitering animals/poultry, 61% of the respondents reported to have irregularly seen animals in last six months. As a deterrent, Nankindu says they have passed bylaws on garbage management, latrine and loitering animals. Although toilet coverage in Butemba seems fair, 61% of the respondents said they know where to find public toilets, but they are dirty. The town has only five public toilets and 168 households in town have no pit latrines.

John Lwanga, a resident, said many house holds do not have latrines because they consider constructing them expensive. He calls upon the town council to instead establish more public toilets. Whereas there is overgrown grass in the town according to 39% of the respondents, its maintenance level is good. According to Nankindu, the cattle market and Bukwiiri open market are the biggest sources of revenue to the town.

MAYOR’S VIEW

  •  “With sh12m, nothing much can be done, but we are looking forward to increase our local revenue base in order to be able to fund our plans for public health,” says the mayor, James Ssekungu.

 

Good practices:
Piped water project

To make things better, town clerk Nankindu says the town’s plan is being redrawn to ensure a well-planned town planted with flowers and trees. Samuel Ssebitebbe, the district councillor of Gayaza sub-county, said the town is poorly planned with no industrial area, which makes residents engage in whatever activities they feel like. Butemba mainly depends on borehole water and the respondents said it is clean and regular.

There are, however, plans to improve water coverage, according to Nankindu. “Water Mission Uganda has helped us to establish a pilot water project in town, but it is small and the Government, through the ministry of water and environment, is planning for a piped water project, which would enable most parts of the town access running water,” she says.

FORT PORTAL TOWN

Fort Portal defines royalty order

By Stephen Ssenkaaba and Rogers Sunday
Fort Portal is, from a naked eye’s view, one of the cleanest municipalities in Uganda. It indeed is, if its green and well-maintained streets are anything to go by. But it is not all a bed of roses. It is suffocating under its growing population. Fort Portal municipality is one of the most progressive metropolis in western Uganda.

Founded in 1893 as a colonial administrative centre for British imperialist Sir Gerald Portal, Fort Portal has over the years grown into a municipality and is now hoping to upgrade to city status. But before that, it will have to iron out a few sanitation and hygiene issues.

The acting town clerk, John Bosco Rusoke says that the municipality is doing its best to clean up, but its efforts are compromised by poor drainage system and the poor disposal of garbage by the public. Stray animals that graze on the green belts are also a threat to town’s sanitation. That said, the municipality is doing well on animals. A recent Vision Group survey on sanitation here indicates that the people of Fort Portal are generally happy with the cleanliness of their town.

Considering availability of cleaning schedules, state of the roads/streets, market areas and dustbins, residents rated the town at a commendable 7.8/10 score showing that they are satisfied with the state of hygiene in the municipality. Ninety-two percent of the respondents said they had ever seen dustbins in the municipality and that they were clean. All respondents reported finding it easy to locate dustbins in the municipality. Even then, 39% of respondents had ever seen someone litter the municipality in the last three months.

On the overall, 92% of the respondents rated the municipality as clean. There are 24 garbage skips half a kilometre apart and garbage is collected daily. A reasonable amount of the municipality’s budget goes to maintaining cleanliness. Each of the three divisions in the municipality spends on cleanliness as follows: South Division, sh93,250,000, East Division sh3,240,000 and West, sh3,390,000.

However, 35% of the respondents said they had ever seen sewage bursts in the municipality and fixing it was slow. Public toilets were reported as averagely clean. Access to the public toilets is sh139. It is expected that people should be able to afford and make good use of the toilets. Only 35% of the respondents had noticed overgrown grass in the municipality, a loophole that the municipal may have to deal with.

The residents are yet to get sufficient water here. Information from the deputy town clerk indicates that 60% of residents have access to piped water. Other sources of water include: springs/wells, boreholes and rain. Human waste is managed through the pit latrines, septic tank and a sewerage system and only 40% of the population is connected to the central sewer system. The municipality has one planner, one health inspector, five engineers, one lands officer, three education officers and one environment officer

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The round about in the centre of Fort Portal town. Photos by Rogers Sunday


GOOD PRACTICES
The focus is on environmental protection


The town clerk said environmental committees have been instituted at the division levels so as to promote good environmental practices. This committee is required to formulate and implement bylaws on sanitation. All shops are required to have a dustbin in front to ensure easy collection of garbage and to avoid littering.

A modern compost site was constructed at Kitere in Kibimba West Division where all the garbage is dumped for recycling. The divisions are charged with the responsibility of sweeping, collecting and transporting the garbage to Kitere

CHALLENGES
As tidy as the town may look, it is silently grappling with noise pollution, especially from mobile advert operators and video libraries. The residents have also complained about air pollution from vehicles and burning waste. Water from washing bays flows into Mpanga river; raising fears of contamination.

 

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No latrines in Butema,Fort Portal defines royalty order

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