Court directs Transport ministry to construct toilets along highways


A public toilet in Nairobi. FILE PHOTO | NMG

A judge has directed the government to provide toilets and other sanitation facilities along highways.

In a ruling, Justice Kossy Bor directed the Transport Cabinet Secretary to constitute and chair a team that will include representatives from the council of governors (COG), Kenya National Highways Authority, Kenya Rural Roads Authority and Kenya Urban Roads Authority.

The judge said the working group should formulate the policy for the provision of sanitation facilities to give effect to the right to a clean and healthy environment along the highways.

Lawyer Adrian Kamotho had asked for the toilets to be provided within 60 days but in the decision, Justice Bor said taking into account the budgetary implications of formulating and implementing the policy, it was impracticable to have functional public toilets within the said period throughout the road network in Kenya.

“The national transport policy should incorporate toilets and other sanitation on road stops on the national and international trunk roads. The policy should take into account the need to have toilets and other sanitation facilities maintained properly by the county governments once constructed,” she said.

The judge added that the policy should take into account the overall objective of guaranteeing every person using the road network reasonable access to decent toilets and sanitation facilities.

In the case, Mr Kamotho wanted counties through CoG and KenHA to set up and operate hygienic sanitary facilities, saying Article 42 of the Constitution entitles every citizen to a clean and healthy environment and reasonable standards of sanitation.