Residents of Kosis have expressed concern over constant exposure to sewerage waste and other household garbage not being collected on time.
Spokesperson of the community Anna Joseph narrated to New Era that they are experiencing constant blockages in the sewerage system and although workers are called in to fix the problem, it does not take long before the same problem recurs.
She explained that sometimes it gets worse, as sewerage waste flows back to the residents’ toilet pots, which causes a bad smell and forces residents to use buckets to remove the faeces.Residents usually discard these buckets.Rebekka Sagarias, the oldest resident at the settlement aged 93, is one of the residents mostly affected by the blockages and she has to struggle using a bucket to remove the waste out of the toilet that is just a door away from her kitchen.
“When it’s blocked she has to remove the faeces with a bucket as old as she is, as there is no choice,” said Joseph showing this reporter how close the toilet is to the kitchen sink.
While some residents’ houses are connected to the sewerage system, others have pit toilets and some still use the bucket system.
Joseph further narrated that sometimes the people employed to pick up the waste do not come on time and even when garbage is collected it is not properly disposed off, as wind blows it back into the residential areas.
The garbage collectors use a donkey cart and move from one house to the other to pick up all waste materials and empty all the buckets. Gert Williams and Joseph Isaaks were busy doing their rounds when New Era caught up with them. They expressed dismay over their unhygienic working conditions claiming that sometimes they do not have protective masks and gloves, especially when they empty the buckets.
Although they had masks, the two were seen picking the garbage with bare hands. They get N$700 a month for the work.
“We sometimes work without anything to protect ourselves, it’s not good when you empty the buckets with your bare hands,” Williams said.When contacted for comment on the situation, the Acting Deputy Director at the //Kharas Regional Council said he was aware of the problem and plans are in the pipeline to acquire a sewerage jetting machine, which will solve the problem permanently. “We will see our finances but we will definitely buy it,” he said. He said sand and newspapers that people use as toilet paper mostly caused the blockages.
He also explained that the collection of garbage has been outsourced by the council to a resident of Kosis as a way of empowering the community.