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It is easy to observe in Maputo City – pollution caused by deliberate urination outside the control of municipal authorities. When a container is not available, passers-by resort to trees, poles and panel pillars instead.
Some people tell O País that the situation is due to the lack of public toilets. “The reality in Maputo City is shameful. There are no toilets at the bus stops, so I use the containers,” Nunes Emílio says.
For women, the situation is more critical. “Imagine me in my pants, and in the midst of this crowd, how can I lean against a container or a tree to urinate? It’s best to try to make sure I get home, but it’s easier for men. If there were toilets at all the stops, neither the men nor the women would urinate this way,” Lola Mangahe argues.
Environmentalist Aguiar Baquete says that the problem of urine pollution has two sides, namely the user and the city management.
“Often people do it for lack of a place to meet their needs, but this does not justify the action. So, we can take two approaches: one is to try to find out why [people do this] and the other is to examine the role of city management. But I must emphasise the risks, starting with modesty, the harm to one’s image, soil contamination and disease among them,” Baquete says.
Article 49 of city council resolution 15/2004 prohibits anyone from urinating or passing stools in public, but is widely ignored. The city council says there is no justification for such behaviour.
Rute Massingue, from the monitoring division of the Maputo Municipal Council, says that there are toilets at bus stops but they under private sector management, and that work is in hand to address the situation.
“We have many public toilets managed by the private sector, in addition to other places such as gas stations, restaurants, snack bars and other places people can turn to in order to relieve themselves. That is why these practices are not justified,” she said.Source: O País
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