Funds for eradication of bucket toilets misused, Parly committees find

A sewage spill awaited Members of Parliament who visited a toilet construction site in Clocolan, Free State.

The Department of Water and Sanitation Free State regional head, Dr Ntili, addresses portfolio members on a sanitation project in Clocolan Setsoto Local Municipality, Free State. Picture: @DWS_RSA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Two parliamentary committees have found evidence of the misuse of funds earmarked for the eradication of bucket toilets in the Free State.

The Standing Committee on Appropriations and the Portfolio Committee on Water and Sanitation visited a number of sites in the province this week as part of parliamentary oversight work.

Their discovery follows President Cyril Ramaphosa’s launch of a new initiative, Sanitation Appropriate for Education (SAFE), this week to fast-track the eradication of pit toilets at many of the country’s state schools.

A sewage spill awaited Members of Parliament (MPs) who visited a toilet construction site in Clocolan.

Sewage was apparently flowing into a nearby stream.

Committee chairperson Pinky Phosa says it is evident that no feasibility study was conducted for the project before its inception.

Should this have been done, the study would have shown that there is a need to put a water reticulation system in place first.

She says residents are now forced to continue using bucket toilets due to poor planning by government officials.

The committee will revisit the area within the next three months to assess progress.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)