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Water quality of high population densityareas at the national university of lesotho`s main campus and neighbouring manonyane community

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Author: 
Sunny Aiyuk, Tsaletseng Siimane and Relebohile Hlabana
Abstract: 

Given the importance of potable and safe water supplies for human consumption and, especially, given the vulnerability of such supplies where there exist high population densities, this study,from September 2014 to April 2015, assessed the water supplies at the National University of Lesotho and environs, for their potability.Water samples were obtained from different sources on campus, including stand pipes (taps) and tanks across the campus. Samples were also collected from sources that included springs, open wells and boreholes in the neigbouringManonyane community. These samples were analysed for Coliform and E. coli, together with physico-chemical parameters; pH, total dissolved solids (TDS) and residual chlorine. A structured questionnaire was also designed and administered, to get people's views concerning their perception of and experiences with the water sources.The water was generally of acceptable quality. TDS concentrations satisfied the WHO standards (below 1000 mg/l), being of excellent quality (<300 mg/l). Residual chlorine was generally below detection limit, pointing to a probable contamination linked to the health problems users reported. Fecal coliforms and E. coli were generally very low, except for one source. A mixed perception of the qualities of the water sources was obtained, but, generally, 60% rated the water qualities as satisfactory, good and very good. Users also reported experiences that compromised their health in one way or the other, due to continuous use of the water sources. Following the study, interventions were made in the community to address the problems identified. These ranged from community education to printing and distributing flyers on health education.

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               Prof. Dr. ISMAIL YILDIRIM

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