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Government intensifies efforts to eradicate Kibera flying toilets

The national government has built 20 ablution blocks as part of its efforts to rid Kibera of ‘flying toilets’.

This is part of the Nairobi Regeneration Programme that aims at improving sanitation and water provision in the slum.

Water and Sanitation Chief Administrative Secretary Andrew Tuimur says water and sanitation coverage in Kibera is currently low at about 20 per cent.

“The idea is to ensure solid waste is not thrown into the river and if we get some funding, we will continue to build more ablution blocks and improve more sewer lines,” he said.

Water, Sanitation and Irrigation CAS Andrew Tuimur inspects Ngong River clean-up and sanitation projects in Kibera on January 20, 2021
Image: MAUREEN KINYANJUI

Tuimur also affirmed the government’s commitment to ensuring Kibera becomes one of the cleanest informal settlements in the capital.

Lack of toilets is a common problem in many slums. For years, Kibera dwellers have been associated with flying toilets due to lack of a proper sewerage system. In this regard, people relieve themselves in polythene bags then throw them into drains and trenches, or even on rooftops or roadsides.

Besides the 20 ablution blocks, Athi Water Works Development Agency has also put up water stations in different parts of the informal settlement. However, there is a need for more given the increasing population in the area.

Athi Water has also set up independent community water supply projects to provide clean free water to help curb the spread of Covid-19. It has drilled boreholes and mounted overhead steel tanks. The distribution lines produce 2.5 million litres a day. The projects serve Kibera DC, Silanga, Kianda and Soweto areas.

The state is also working on the Sh500 million Kibera Water and Sanitation Project that involves unblocking and rehabilitating manholes, extending a sewer line to Jamhuri Showground and laying of water pipes. 

The project will benefit more than 40,000 residents. It has created jobs for more than 200 youths through the Mazingira programme.

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