It’s not all about flushing
On Friday, 15 May 2015, Minister Nomvula Mokonyane convened a National Sanitation Indaba at the Durban International Convention Centre to discuss sanitation issues under the theme “It’s not all about flushing’.
The Deputy President of the Republic of South Africa, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, delivered the keynote address. The Indaba aimed to interrogate alternative solutions to sanitation which will provide safe, decent and reliable sanitation as a means to restore the dignity of many South Africans currently without access to adequate sanitation services.
Amongst the key messages shared by Minister Mokonyane with the delegates was the need to look at alternative technologies that use less water to dispose of waste.
“We need to move with speed to ensure that we engage communities and change the outdated assumptions that have led people to believe adequate sanitation is waterborne sanitation", said Mokonyane.
"We must begin by challenging the property development sector through regulation and licensing requirements to invest itself in developing properties less reliant on water for sanitation in order to ensure we introduce the alternative solutions to low-, middle- and high-income areas", added the Minister.
While delivering the keynote address, Ramaphosa referred to the City of Johannesburg that is already looking at regulating and incentivising the installation of low-flush toilets and other water-saving urinals as standard features at homes, offices and commercial sites.
“We need to generate new sanitation solutions that are sustainable and will meet our current and future needs. If we continue to use the old flushing methods we are placing huge pressure on our scarce water resources and the environment into which we flush our waste”, said Ramaphosa.