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School closes after toilets collapse

15 May 2013, 12:27 Arap Yego

Public health officials in Mt Elgon District have ordered the immediate closure of a primary school in the area after pit latrines in the learning institution sunk following a heavy downpour, barely a week after the pupils reported back for second term.

More 580 pupils of Kongit Primary School in Kaptama Location were sent home on Tuesday after the pit latrines used by teachers and pupils collapsed last week.

Mt Elgon District Public Health Officer John Nyamongo said they ordered the closure of the learning institution to prevent an outbreak of diseases due to poor sanitation.

“The school will remain closed until new pit latrines are constructed. The school gate will be opened for the learners once we are satisfied that the constructed latrines are enough for the pupils,” he said.

Alex Kimtai, the school head teacher, confirmed that they complied with the order issued by the public health officers. He said that the school has suffered double tragedy due to the ongoing heavy rains.

"Two weeks ago, the 12 pit latrines used by male pupils collapsed, leaving us with 6 latrines for the girls. The remaining latrines, that we thought the learners would use as we construct others, sunk last week, a day before the pupils reported for second term. A block used by teachers also went down,” said Kimtai.

collapsed toilets, collapsed building, poor sanita

The head teacher appealed to the Ministry of Education and that of Special Programmes as well as well wishers to intervene and assist the learning institution to set up the vital structures, noting that the school had no set budget for the same.

“This was an emergency; we are appealing to anybody who can assist to chip in and save the situation so that the pupils may return to school," said Kimtai.

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