Open defecation: Kenya court orders construction of toilets along highways
London, Jan. 28, 2020 (AltAfrica)-A Kenyan court has ordered the government to build toilets and other sanitation facilities along highways as part of measures to curb indiscriminate defecation along the roads
In the ruling, Justice Kossy Bor directed the transport minister to constitute and chair a team that will include representatives from the council of governors (COG), Kenya National Highways Authority, Kenya Rural Roads Authority and Kenya Urban Roads Authority.
She said the working group should formulate the policy for the provision of sanitation facilities to give effect to the right to a clean and healthy environment along the highways.
Nairobi lawyer Adrian Kamotho had submitted that the toilets be provided within 60 days but in the decision, the court said taking into account the budgetary implications of formulating and implementing the policy, it was impracticable to have functional public toilets within the said period throughout the road network in Kenya.
“The national transport policy should incorporate toilets and other sanitation on road stops on the national and international trunk roads. The policy should take into account the need to have toilets and other sanitation facilities maintained properly by the county governments once constructed,” she said.
The judge added that the policy should take into account the overall objective of guaranteeing every person using the road network reasonable access to decent toilets and sanitation facilities.
The advocate wants the authorities concerned to set up and operate hygienic sanitary facilities, saying the law entitles every citizen to a clean and healthy environment and reasonable standards of sanitation.
In Africa, the situation of open defecation remains one of the most talked of banes as the United Nations estimates that 60 percent of the population do not have access to decent toilet facilities. This has contributed to the spread of bacterial diseases such as cholera, diarrhoea and polio infections