Ugandan Health and sanitation officials doled out a very rare punishment during unexpected visits to homes of the Kaberamaido locals to find out if the families had paid attention to the calls to improve sanitation.
The enforcement team headed, by Kassim Eyuu, said they want all the locals to do their utmost for 100 percent toilet coverage.
According to the head, the move is very certainly useful given that faeces from just one household or a poorly hygienic home can have a bade influence on the radius that a fly from it can reach.
Inspector Moses Ebusu however alleged that on getting to some homes, many men fled into nearby bushes to break away from punishment leaving the women behind. On the other hand, many women hid their husbands to steer away from punishment.
“When we visited different villages, some men took off and only women stayed behind. Worst of all, some women hid their men under beds to evade authorities.”
Despite that, a good number of men found without toilets at their homes in Kaberamaido district were whipped by members of the health and sanitation district task force.
A local newspapers reports that some health workers and local leaders also did not have toilets at their homes, but it does not say whether they were flogged.
In Uganda the state of toilet coverage has been a steady headline with many asking the government to make it compulsory for households to construct a toilet facility.
Even though the total toilet coverage in the country has increased, recent national population and housing census figures still show that some percentage of the population stays in households with no toilet facilities.
Families who live in the rural area of the country have come to depend heavily on bush toilets. The few low-depth latrines there, are either filled up or not functional at all. So people use the bush in such instance.
More worrying is the fact that children below the age of five are seen spending most of their time playing in the shallow dry river bed which is faecal polluted. Also, they say it poses risks to the health of the locals.
As a result, Ugandan Health and sanitation officials urged the Kaberamaido locals to each build a good toilet. The leader of this enforcement team, Kassim Oyuu, said they want the sanitation standards of villages in Kaberamaido and other rural areas to improve.
And their efforts are already producing result. The Assistant district health officer, Gregory Ocen, says the district has 84% toilet coverage, up from 32% when they started the sensitization programme.