11 January 2018

Namibia: Wenela Toilets in Disrepair for a Year

Katima Mulilo — Public toilets at Wenela Border Post in the Zambezi Region have been out of order for about a year compelling travellers to use nearby bushes to relieve themselves when they visit Namibia.

When New Era visited the busy border post on Tuesday, the toilets were locked with officials at the border saying they have not been utilised since early last year.

They say they opened a job card with the maintenance office at the Ministry of Works and Transport in Katima Mulilo but to no avail.

"Officials from works were here, but they said we should buy the materials needed to fix the toilets ourselves because there is no money, and after we do that they will come and fix them," one of the staff deployed at the gateway to Zambia, Zimbabwe, DRC, Tanzania and many other countries said.

Hundreds of travellers from Europe travelling to the Victoria Falls on the shared border between Zambia and Zimbabwe and Ngonye Falls and Sioma-Ngweze National Park in Zambia also use this border post.

The staff also highlighted that since the border has officials from various government institutions and agencies posted there no one is willing to take responsibility for having the toilets fixed.

"This border is not for Ministry of Finance alone, and we also don't have money," said an official from the finance ministry.

Officials from Ministry of Health were very concerned with the situation, because every time they have gone for a health inspection, they were told that the toilets have not yet been repaired.

"This is very disturbing. Imagine if someone with cholera who has diarrhoea were to arrive at our border and the toilets are not working.

"It would mean that person would have to run to the bush, and they may even end up sitting in an open place, which would be very dangerous for all of us," Lempie Onesmus from the health ministry said.

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