Free State toilets - 'residents' rights violated'

2011-05-16 18:48

Johannesburg - The SA Human Rights Commission has found that the rights and dignity of residents in the Moqhaka municipality in the Free State were violated when they were forced to use open toilets.

In its findings, released in a statement on Monday, the commission said the municipality's explanation, that it lacked adequate resources, was not justified and "therefore unacceptable".

"The respondent failed to adequately conceptualise, plan and implement its project which resulted in the residents being forced to use unenclosed toilets."

It said the measures provided by the municipality did not meet the "reasonable" standard of the right to water and sanitation services.

"The complaint of violations to the rights of human dignity, privacy, and a clean environment are upheld."

The commission found that the provincial and national government did not "adequately monitor" the municipality's work or intervene in respect of their legislative and constitutional obligations.

The Democratic Alliance had lodged a complaint with the SAHRC last year when 1 600 unenclosed toilets were discovered in the ANC-run municipality.

In a similar incident in the DA-run Western Cape, Cape Town was ordered to enclose over 1 000 toilets in Makhaza, Khayelitsha in May.

In a statement, the opposition said the ANC used the open toilet saga to portray the DA as being racist and called for an apology.

"The DA calls on the ANC to retract and apologise for its accusations of racism, made against the Democratic Alliance in relation to the situation in Makhaza," spokesperson Lindiwe Mazibuko said.

"The ANC has used the issue of open toilets to portray the DA as racist. Now more than ever the ANC needs to focus on service delivery rather than racial rhetoric and good governance rather than divisiveness."

Minister for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation in the Presidency Collins Chabane said his department was working with National Treasury to monitor the implementation of infrastructure delivery.

It would also work with the human settlements ministry to investigate what led to the building of the toilets by the municipality.

Chabana said he was concerned with the provision of open toilets and would ensure it was not repeated again anywhere in the country.

  • renaldogouws - 2011-05-16 18:53

    So where is Malema and Zuma now... got nothing to say? Typical idiots... Glass houses people... glass houses.

      gizzy - 2011-05-16 19:38

      I wonder if Malema is going to break down the zinc structures and demand concrete ones!!!!! I won't hold my breath though! Two faced, lying ANC!

      farmworker - 2011-05-16 20:10

      The Toilets are not that import, the important this that we need to vote ANC in power to AVOID the following 1. Even the madam knows. As long as we are still alive, the freedom will be defended 2. "I have not consulted the African people on the language issue and I'm not going to. An African might find that 'the big boss' only spoke Afrikaans or only spoke English. It would be to his advantage to know both languages". This will never happen in this life time

      Robnob - 2011-05-16 20:13

      Unfortunately this is a little too late, none of these ANC bigwigs give a sh&t about it and the statement by Zuma about "breaks his heart" is a bigger load of sh&t! Unfortunately the uneducated fools will still vote for the ANC, in which case they deserve to live in the conditions they live in. This and the "kill the boer" court case have been very well hidden so far this week.

      farmworker - 2011-05-16 20:30


      Robnob - 2011-05-16 20:54

      Yes Viva indeed @farmworker When this reign of terror by the ANC is over we will relocate all the statues of Zuma, Malema, Mbeki etc to the baboon pit in the JHB zoo. Where their "people" can appreciate them. Till then though the poor will get poorer and the comrade fatcats will get richer. Unfortunately for you it is your people that will suffer more, the minority still have the brains to keep thriving and holding the majority of the wealth no matter who wins.

      Janine - 2011-05-17 07:30

      @Farmworker - never say never!

      The Observer - 2011-05-17 08:10

      yes farmworker you are correct the anc are rocks. That is exactly why these people have to sh$t in the bush. Viva sh$tting in the bush viva anc.

      Meanleader - 2011-07-05 16:28

      Open toilets are a breech of their human rights ?????? But kakking in the bush is OK ? Oh and @robnob have a bells when you get home ...farmworker needs a bit of evolution before his intellect will be of any consequence !

  • Lestor - 2011-05-16 19:09

    "The SA Human Rights Commission has found that the rights and dignity of residents in the Moqhaka municipality in the Free State were violated when they were forced to use open toilets." Im not a ANC supporter but this is absolute rubbish, no one forces anyone to use those toilets. After all they went to the toilet before they were built didn't they? The people chose to swop to unenclosed toilets because they felt it was preferable to there old method. This is not a violation of human rights in any way. This is service delivery, admittedly 8 years is very bad service delivery. But no one is forcing these people to go to the toilet in an unenclosed toilet. The fact that they are there does not amount to forcing people to use them. Though big do not use signs might be in order. All it has done is given people a choice of what they prefer until they can be enclosed. They are not forced to do anything. That said 8 years is a shocker and is unacceptable.

      zak - 2011-05-16 19:21

      Wow Dont we wish people said the same when everyong was "crapping" on the cape toilets! LOL

      Andrew - 2011-05-16 19:44

      Lester, put yourself in the position of an unemployed,unskilled black in a township with no tiolet and one tap that you share with a hundred others. A toilet arrives without walls....better than you use it even though it's undignified. The SAHRC are 110% right and you have no "right" to even comment on this issue.

      Lestor - 2011-05-16 20:13

      @andrew, I dealt with that in my original post, yes the point is they choose, they are not forced as the judge stated. There is the option to not use them and you cannot ignore this. As long as there is reasonable choice involved there can be no human rights violation. Now if the government was building long drops for them and stopped when these toilets were made then yes that would be a human rights violation as it was taking away the choice. The only question in my mind is there a reasonable alternative to these open toilets? Because if there is this judgement is just silly. A long drop is a perfectly reasonable alternative. A crap hiding in the bushes not so much. I have the freedom of speech, I have the right to comment on whatever I choose to, my comment doesn't mean much but I have the right.

      Andrew - 2011-05-16 20:32

      Lester , you have the privilege to comment. Those living in the poorest townships, that are being exploited by the politicians, have the right to decent toilets, but don't have the privilege to comment. Your viewpoint is only a viewpoint from afar. I hope you enjoy going to the bathroom at three in the morning and give a thought to what it would be like if you were in a township...but by the grace of God! | 1 reply () Delete

      Lestor - 2011-05-16 20:54

      You say privilege, completely wrong word, it is a basic right. A privilege is something that can be revoked. Be very glad you are wrong about this. What I do have is a privileged viewpoint, i.e. I have a enclosed toilet. But that is irrelevant to this for one reason. You have yet to explain why im wrong, I have acknowledged they have the right to decent toilets, hence all that about a reasonable alternative. Yes it sucks that they don't have but it still cannot change the facts of this case. Its funny that you say my viewpoint is one from a far, you know so is yours, so is the judges, being emotionally involved does not help make correct decisions. So that is not a problem. If you want too prove me wrong find out if there is a reasonable alternative. Go read up on law and find out what the law says about this issue, maybe the judge was sloppy with the word forced? I don't know. But don't just say imagine you lived in a township and needed the toilet at 3 in the morning. It means nothing. We already know there situation sucks, it doesn't mean human rights violation.

      apie - 2011-05-17 10:04

      If you do not pay taxes you are not entitled to services. Finish and klaar.

  • BigMoose - 2011-05-16 19:18

    People who don't have toilet walls... Can't write graffiti on them.

      Andrew - 2011-05-16 19:45


      Dave - 2011-05-16 20:02

      I wonder if they would write...Vote ANC?

  • Andrew - 2011-05-16 19:19

    We need to understand that both the DA and the ANC are both full of Sh!te. Our country is still a 3rd world African state with the biggest gap in the world between rich and poor. We have more obsese blacks versus blacks without decent tiolets by a thousand to one.The poor are just political tools of elitist ANC and DA!!!

      erno.v.dyk - 2011-05-16 19:35

      @ Andrew - I'm not going to even attempt to say that the DA doesn't have their own issues but, let's face it, the Kayelitsha indaba was created by the previous anc government promising things they couldn't deliver. The DA took over and tried their damndest to honour the anc promises. IN the end it was all about 55 unenclosed toilets compared to the anc's 1600. If I was part of the anc I would have made sure I don't have any dirty laundry before embarking on a smear campaign against the DA, but that would take foresight which we know the anc doesn't posess.

      Andrew - 2011-05-16 19:54

      @erno...I fully agree...It's a shame that the poorest in our country are being exploited by the 2 main political parties!!

      Tracer - 2011-05-17 07:30

      there's only ONE party exploiting the poor.

      Point Blank - 2011-05-17 08:40

      The DA don't govern enough for anyone to accuse them of exploiting the poor...

      apie - 2011-05-17 10:05

      The poor do not pay taxes and do not deserve services.

      Meanleader - 2011-07-05 16:44

      Andrew the DA is the only alternative to the ANC . They have run the Cape Town metro better than ANY other province or municipality . You are venting through your rectum when you acuse them of misusing the poor . The ANC gets the votes from the blacks because the blacks have fallen for the often racist propaganda and false promises of the ANC .....where do the DA fit in here ????

  • Slapper - 2011-05-16 19:42

    Whats Poliodonkey and his mates got to say about this? His ANC masters have gone deaf and Dumb on the subject, so I expect they will slavishly follow the ANC example?

      Meanleader - 2011-07-05 16:45

      The little Troll is conspicuous in his absence ..... I like it though !

  • gizzy - 2011-05-16 19:43

    I just don't understand this whole toilet issue. Surely if the people were given the tools to enclose them it should have been done. There are many unemployed people in the townships with skills that could enclose those toilets. People have to learn that nothing lands on your plate and is given free. Besides, I truely believe, that if you have worked for something you look after it and appreciate it all the more.

      Andrew - 2011-05-16 19:51

      Gizzy,I guess you are going to donate the materials needed to enclose toilets as the poor in the townships dont have the resources. They are unemployed and unskilled. Maybe you will also supply some training in toilet building!!

      gizzy - 2011-05-16 21:23

      No Andrew, my point is, instead of the ANC handing out tenders to their family and friends they could provide the material to the people and as I said, there are many unemployed people with skills in the townships. They should be given the tools to enclose those toilets. They would appreciate the fruits of their labour and hopefully they will take care of those toilets. Don't be so condicending to presume that all unemployed people are unskilled. I'm sure there are many unemployed people in the townships that could teach you a skill or two. But how would you know if you never set foot in places like that?????

      Tracer - 2011-05-17 07:28

      oh please Andrew...its not rocket science to erect an enclosure around a toilet. Its so indicicative of the general attitude of the local population. Give me give me give me..... how about they try do something for themselves for a change...Its like looking after a creche ffs.

      Point Blank - 2011-05-17 08:42

      If the community got off their butts and picked up the tons of recyclable plastic, glass and tin lying strewn all around the townships I'm sure they could have gathered enough money to afford the enclosures... There is pots of money lying around the townships... - 2011-05-17 10:06

      I agree gizzy. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, Give a man a fishing rod and he will eat for the rest of his life. Goverment could provide the tools and equipment to the community, those with the skill could erect the enclosures and "sell" their skills to other members of the community.

      apie - 2011-05-17 10:08

      Andrew, if the poor can build a shack why can they not build a much smaller wall around the toilet. I WANT I WANT I WANT.

  • SP - 2011-05-16 19:49

    It's only in Africa where toilets can cause such a crapstorm!

  • Mike or Mpho - 2011-05-16 19:56

    lol! and now?

  • Deset Rat - 2011-05-16 19:57

    SA politics is a priceless comedy! It is a case of how many buckets of sh.t one can scoop out of unwalled toilets and throw at one another

      Dave - 2011-05-16 20:00

      Well recently it seems the ANC has been throwing it at themselves

  • Joryha - 2011-05-16 22:01

    ANC has tried to discredit the DA with the open toilet issue in the WC with the knowledge that the ANC itself was violating rights of human dignity and privacy of people in the Free State. ANC, your dirty tricks will not work. WC belongs to the DA.

  • Tracer - 2011-05-17 07:25

    not only that, where's all the usual ANC supporters that had so much to say about the Cape Town toilet saga? Poliowanker, kolobe...whats the matter, cat got your tongue? farkin hypocrites.

  • apie - 2011-05-17 09:56

    The toilet saga started by ANCYL has bacfired on them badly.LOL.

  • bmcrystal - 2011-05-17 10:11

    Lame duck president as for Malema idiot go back to wood work....oh you cant you got an H for woodwork.

  • regularguy - 2011-05-17 11:17

    The interesting fact here is that although Provincial and National Goverment denied being aware of this situasion, it now is clear that they did know about it. So ANC , never show a finger because you might have three showing back to you!!!

  • Bok Fan - 2011-07-13 15:00

    The Yob League is absent from class again when the lesson on "How not to stuff up royally and demonstrate to the wide world what a complete rashole I am " is once again being taught for their benefit.

  • Bok Fan - 2011-07-13 15:01

    Deafening silence from the EhrenRich corner.

  • Bok Fan - 2011-07-13 15:05

    I still want to know why people who obviously enjoy taking a dump in public ended up being told they have no dignity. By some oke in suit sitting Jozi. Thats an insult to their self esteem right there. They should sue someone.

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