The Impact of Solid Waste Management on the Socio-Economic Development of Urban Areas of Uganda Case Study: Jinja Municipality
Author: NAISIKWE LYDIA
Supervisor: Estellina Namutebi
Solid waste management is a global challenge with devastating effects on the health of the people and sanitation of the environment more especially in urban centres of the developing world. The health status of the people and sanitation of the environment play significant impact on socio-economic development. This prompted the researcher to investigate the impact of solid waste management on socio-economic development of Jinja Municipality. Jinja Municipality is one of the urban centres of Uganda that are grappling with solid waste management. The study objectives were: determining the relationship between the nature of solid waste management and socio-economic development of Jinja Municipality; establishing challenges associated with solid waste management in relation to socio-economic development of Jinja Municipality and exploring possible solutions to solid waste management in relation to socio-economic development of Jinja Municipality.
It was a case study research design adopting qualitative strategy in data collection and analysis. Interviews, observation and documentary review were employed for data collection while data was analysed through content analysis. All response statements were studied and organized into themes categorized according to similarities and differences to enable meaningful conclusions to be derived. The study found out that solid waste management in Jinja Municipality was a dilemma due to challenges of storage, collection, transportation and disposal. Despite the fact that JMC abandoned the previous system of using skips and replaced it with the current one of door-to-door collection, both systems have proved inefficient and ineffective due to inadequate financial resources, increasing quantities of unsorted waste and negative attitude of community members towards proper handling of solid waste generated in households and business premises.
The study results indicate the need to develop efficient and sustainable methods of managing solid waste so as to protect the health of the people as well as the quality and sanitation of the urban environment hence steer socio-economic development. The study recommended that Jinja Municipal Council conducts community awareness on waste reduction methods such as composting and sorting especially that most of the solid waste generated is of biodegradable nature. Households could compost their organic waste for their backyard gardens and flower gardens while business premises could sort or separate waste to ease collection as well as support recycling. This would reduce the quantities of waste released into the solid waste management system amidst budgetary constraints. Provision of proper storage containers and regular collection would help save the effects of uncollected waste on the health of the people and quality of urban environment. It was also recommended the Jinja Municipal Council adopts the 3Ps: Public-Private-Partnership strategy. This strategy could bring together organized groups and individuals to reinforce the efforts of Jinja Municipal Council in managing solid waste as well as creating employment opportunities for the urban poor.