Good news! The National Institute of Statistics, Rwanda (NISR), has issued its Thematic Report on “Characteristics of Household and Housing,” January 2014.
For statistics-crazy people like yours truly, its time to quench our thirst with “new” knowledge.
To put the new data to use, I briefly probe two aspects of Kigali Capital, namely, how “modern” and how “clean” it really is.
HOW DOES ONE MEASURE THESE?
As is evident on the attached picture, Kigali is visually impressive. But the least effective way of assessing cities is surface appearance as in buildings on the main road.
There are more effective ways of measuring “modernity” and “cleanliness” of world capital cities.
I am inclined to look at two most fundamentals in life to get an insight into cleanliness of a major urban habitat: how most city residents 1) prepare their meals and 2) and the mode of toilet infrastructure via which they release themselves.
Can you thing of anything more fundamental than that? I sure can’t. Luckily the NISR provides us with data to answer both questions.
HOW MEALS ARE PREPARED IN RWANDA & IN KIGALI
According to NISR, about 95% of Rwandan households (2.4 million) use either firewood or charcoal for cooking. More urban-based households (63%) than their rural counterparts use charcoal.
Of urban population only 5% of Rwandan households use electricity to cook. This use is primarily a Kigali phenomenon.
TOILET INFRASTRUCTURE IN RWANDA & IN KIGALI
According to NISR, only 1% Rwandan households use flush toilets – meaning that 99% use pit latrines.
That is a lot of latrines in Rwanda. Nearly 2.4 million latrines.
Of urban households including Kigali, 5% use flush toilets – meaning that 95% use pit latrines.
NISR, furthermore, informs us that in urban Rwanda “households often use shared toilet facilities due to lack of space or due to limited financial resources.”
It comes as no surprise that there is no sewage system in Kigali City, a habitat of 1 million.
Unknown to most, Kigali is a dirty city. It is smartly dressed but with dirty underwear.