Status of Human Waste Management in Informal Settlements within the Urban Areas in Developing Countries: Case Study in Eldoret Municipality, Kenya
Opata, Pancras Grephas
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In developing countries, most people live in the informal areas where municipal services are rarely availed. How this affects human waste management is not clearly understood. Consequently, a study was undertaken to determine the status of human waste and their management in the informal settlements of Eldoret Municipality in Kenya. This was a case study involving interviews with a total of 257 households in the informal settlements and interviews with key informants in the realm of waste management of the town. Majority of the residents lived in rented houses. There was poor excreta disposal in the settlements areas. Significantly (P < 0.05) higher quantity of wastes was generated in the informal settlements than the formal settlements within the same environment. The ranges of human wastes generated ranged between 0.001 to 0.026 kg/person/day. The study revealed that the main facility used by residents for human waste disposal in the settlements was pit latrines which were poorly constructed, not properly maintained. Some of the facilities were full and thus discharged their affluent into the environment. The study recommended that with the help of Municipal Council of Eldoret, households to be encouraged to connect to existing sewer wherever possible. Furthermore there is need to exploit the production of biogas. It was also recommended that properly designed and constructed pit latrines, in accordance to health and environmental standards, be used in the informal settlements.