By Paul Wafula
The effluent discharge point is carefully hidden deep inside a thicket, about 200 metres away from the busy Kisumu-Busia highway. It took us more than an hour walking in circles along a small stream that meanders into Kisat River to finally find it.
All around it are tiny farms growing all manner of plants from vegetables to napier grass, giving it a beautiful cover. These tiny plots are separated by deep-water trenches, which make crossing from one small part to the other dangerous. The other way to it is swimming across the angry, filthy river next to the plant. If you do not drown, then you will meet a slippery climb that is impossible to beat without bruising yourself.
As you get close, you are met by a nearly impenetrable canopy of tall overgrown shrubs, interwoven in tree trunks that cast a shroud of darkness even at midday on a bright sunny day. Sharp objects, among them stones and glass, have also been used to discourage anyone from moving towards that point. But the strong, unmistakable, septic stench will lead you directly to it. We squeezed ourselves in until we finally burst through the trees and past the darkness. There it was. Read more…