Pit latrine collapses, kills two in Buikwe

Sunday July 14 2019

Two men who were digging a pit latrine have died after pile of soil collapsed and buried them.

The men had been hired by the management of Mt. Gallie Primary School in Nyenga Division, Njeru Municipality, Buikwe District, to dig the latrine.

The incident happened at about 3pm on Saturday.

Police identified the deceased as Joseph Wakungu alias Anyinyi and George Okadapawo, both residents of Buwampa Cell, Nyenga Division.

According to Mr Charles Ssenkayi, one of the survivors, after lunch, his colleagues decided to resume digging the pit despite realising that the soils were wet following a heavy down pour.

“My colleagues decided to resume work but the walls of the pit were already weak and they were trapped 25 feet underground,” he said.


He said they were a team of five men and their target was to dig a 50-feet deep latrine.

Mr David Onyango, a councillor representing Nyenga Division at the district blamed the incident on negligence of the site engineer who recommended the construction of a deep pit.

‘’According to Ministry of Education guidelines, such deep latrines are no longer acceptable. Only pit lined latrines are recommended. So, the engineer who recommended the construction of such a deep latrine must answer, he is responsible for the death of our residents,” he said.

Before the bodies were retrieved, residents turned rowdy, accusing the police of arriving at the scene late.

After retrieving the bodies, residents blocked police from taking them to a pathologist. They got a medical doctor who carried out a post-mortem at the scene.

Ssezibwa Regional Police Spokesperson, Ms Hellen Butoto said they are investigating the cause of the accident.

“This is a case of ignorance on the part of the engineer and the workers because the soils at the site are [too] loose to accommodate the depth of the kind of pit- latrine they were digging,” she said.