Fed up with waiting for toilets to be delivered to their informal settlement, residents of QQ section in Khayelitsha have had their own environmentally friendly toilet installed and are now demanding that the City of Cape Town reimburse them for the R3 000 it cost.
Community leader Mzonke Poni said residents had come up with the idea because QQ section had been in existence for 20 years, but still did not have access to basic services.
Residents had used open spaces for toilets or had relied on toilets in nearby houses.
|Residents had used open spaces for toilets or had relied on toilets in nearby houses
Poni said endless meetings with the government had been fruitless, so the community had decided to raise R5 each from 600 families in the area.
The focus of the fundraising was so that children at a crèche in the area, also established by the community, would have a safe toilet.
Poni said the toilet, obtained through a local NGO and installed by the community, was environmentally friendly as it did not produce a smell and its decomposed waste could be used as fertiliser.
But he said providing toilets was the city’s responsibility and residents should be reimbursed.
One resident, Joyce Graham, 41, said she feared children could be sexually abused when having to go to the toilet in nearby bushes or behind shacks and felt happier that there was now a proper toilet.
City of Cape Town spokes-man Charles Cooper said residents had installed the toilet at their own risk.
He said if they wanted to be refunded they would have to speak to their ward councillor to see if they could be assisted through money allocated to the ward.
The city was planning the installation of 1 364 chemical toilets for QQ section, but the toilets were being imported and had yet to be delivered. It was hoped the toilets would arrive within two weeks but success would depend on community acceptance and buy-in. - Cape Argus