Some toilets in the Etosha National Park have been permanently closed to the public, mainly due to lack of staff to maintain and regularly clean all the latrines within the park.
It is understood that the toilets have been out of operation for several months now, which has sparked concerns from tourists visiting the park, as they are forced to use the bush when nature calls, or alternatively to drive back to the campsite or lodge where they are accommodated.
Namutoni camp is one of the notable campsites to have been affected. However, plans are underway to rehabilitate and re-design the toilets, and one of the proposed designs is based on the bucket toilet system.
This was brought to light at a stakeholder’s meeting of the Etosha East Forum, where officials from the Ministry of Environment and Tourism; lodge owners, local and traditional authorities and the police force meet regularly to deliberate on plans, developments and issues arising within Etosha and surrounding areas.
Other issues deliberated upon include the illegal sale of alcohol by individuals within the park, which is not allowed, although cases of that nature were said not to be occurring anymore, as opposed to the past years.
The issue of security was also raised in relation to absentee landlords of nearby farms that serve as gateways for intruders and poachers into the park. In some instances only workers are left on the farm and some collude with poachers to gain access to the park.