Sanitation in South Africa needs a revolutionary rethink to preserve water and provide safe facilities for everyone.
The traditional model of flushing toilet is the ‘gold standard’ of sanitation but in is unsustainable in a country where water resource is under pressure.
Dr Jaisheila Rajput called for a rethink across all sectors of society in the country’s quest to become water secure.
She’d flown in that morning from Cape Town in the west, which faces tough drinking water restrictions, set to get tighter next month to preserve supplies. The authorities are planning for the future and Dr Rajput offered some alternatives.
Equally, in Johannesburg the government has pledged a million Rand to renovate the aging system.
But Dr Rajput said that the mistake was repairing the traditional system, not incorporating the latest water saving measures.
“As we look to expand sanitation facilities, too often people just think of pit latrines – that means the flush toilets used by ‘rich people’ become the gold standard,” she said.
She encouraged planning authorities, developers and users to take a look at alternatives, what she described as ‘game changing’ methods. ‘Sanitation is dignity,” she told her audience, but urged them to embrace it as part of future development infrastructure and water security.
“There is an opportunity in this country to address the way sanitation operates,” she said.
As Founder and CEO, Jaisheila Rajput is passionate about developing economic models for sustainability and transforming the way we do business. She is a fervent believer in developing practical and comprehensive solutions that have the biggest value with long term benefit and impacts.
This view is translated into all Tomorrow Matters Now | TOMA-Now service offerings. She has a career spanning over a decade in large corporates in the automotive, chemicals and construction industries and is credited with offering a fresh global perspective to the development of solutions for companies doing business in Africa.
During her presentation at the Gallagher Convention Centre today, she urged governments to work in partnership with developers and the tech producers to incorporate the latest sanitation tech into new projects.
“How can sanitation becpme sexy?” she asked delegates. And she believes it is ensuring the knowledge of what’s avaialbe is shared with everyone and people get asked what they want.
And then there is the change in mindset among people who believe that using two litres of water to flush is an acceptable use of resource.
A short debate at the end suggested water security remains a key issue for South Africa and without protection of supplies and infrastructure, future business investment will be curtailed, which will slow growth and job creation.
Find out more about Dr Jaisheila Rajput and TOMA-Now HERE