OurHealth Public Health & Health Systems

Insufficient sanitation for Ehashahasheni residents

Written by Thabo Molelekwa

In the informal settlement Ehashahasheni (also known as Flukplaas) in Ekurhuleni on the East Rand of Joburg, around 500 households share two water taps and 16 bucket toilets.

The toilets get full before the end of the week and the waste truck only collects buckets once a week on Saturdays.

Community member Hlengiwe Vilane said: “The taps are too far from us. They are near the part of the community that stays next to the main road. I have to travel to get water when I want to do my laundry or do cooking.

“We want the government to provide us with more taps or else they must move us to a good place where we are going to be provided with better sanitation.”

Another community member, Zodwa Mahlaba, told OurHealth: “Our kids get sick, especially from diarrhea. These toilets are dirty and they have a bad smell that gets worse during summer when the temperatures get high. The smell becomes something you can’t stand.”

Fana Dhlamini, a community leader, said: “We are suffering in this place. The government keeps on promising that they will move us here but they don’t stick to their promises. Removing us is not a solution. We want the government to provide some form of interim servicing including water, sanitation and solid waste removal.”

OurHealth tried to get the response from the municipality but couldn’t get it.

About the author

Thabo Molelekwa

Thabo Molelekwa joined OurHealth citizen journalists project in 2013 and went on to become an intern reporter in 2015. Before joining Health-e News, Thabo was a member of the Treatment Action Campaign’s Vosloorus branch. He graduated from the Tshwane University of Technology with a diploma in Computer Systems and started his career at Discovery Health as a claims assessor. In 2016 he was named an International HIV Prevention Reporting Fellow with the International Centre for Journalists and was a finalist in the Discovery Health Journalism Awards competition in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Thabo also completed a feature writing course at the University of Cape Town in 2016. In 2017 he became a News reporter , he is currently managing the Citizen Journalism programme.You can follow him on @molelekwa98