Rural schools in Eastern Cape of South Africa are set to benefit from a sanitation upgrade project for an estimated US $10.41m. The project has already been rolled out by Coega Development Corporation (CDC) on behalf of the Department of Education (DoE) for the region. CDC marketing and communications head Dr Ayanda Vilakazi has said there was need for urgent intervention at schools in the Eastern Cape.
The project will see to it that 108 schools in Transkei get 947 toilets as part of an initiative to improve infrastructure in schools in the region.
Despite the fact that there are many people in South Africa who lack proper sanitation infrastructure, with rural schools having unusable facilities; the most affected being those in KwaZulu Natal, Limpopo and the Eastern Cape. Recently on February, another program – Bucket Eradication Program – that would see communal ablution facilities constructed in Nelson Mandela Bay municipality was launched in the country.
Some schools in the area totally lack toilets while those that have are either in bad situations, some being totally broken, dirty or broken resulting to their unuse.
According to the Programme Manager for CDC Thembeka Poswa, poor infrastructure in the region results in poor hygiene and safety of the school children, something which affects their learning.
Poswa noted that they were ensuring that schools in the region have enough toilets and facilities for children to wash their hands.
Eleven contractors were appointed by CDC for the sanitation upgrade project. 14 schools in Joe Ggabi will have 173 toilets upgraded, 145 toilets in 26 schools in Alfred Nzo District, 238 toilets in Chris Hani District, while 19 schools in OR Tambo will have a total of 276 toilets upgraded with another 115 toilets improved on in Amathole.