November 24, 2014
Health officials in Uganda’s southwestern district of Mbarara have announced plans to partner with local commercial banks to extend financial services to families in the district for constructing improved pit latrines.
Masereka Umaru, the district health inspector tells our correspondent there that this partnership with commercial banks like Post Bank and Opportunity Bank is aimed at increasing safe toilet coverage in the district which currently stands at only 53 percent of the homesteads there. This means that the remaining 47 percent practice open defecation.
Masereka explains that some poor families in the rural parts of the district find it hard to construct pit latrines because the procedure needs a lot of funds to hire people to construct pits and buy various materials including pipes.
He is optimistic that this arrangement that will see people get loans to re-pay in three years will enable homes to have safe latrines that could help in the fight against poor sanitation related diseases.
This comes a week after the commemoration of the World Toilet Day, a day set aside to highlight the dilemma of 2.5 billion people without access to a clean, private toilet globally.