One source of frustration in Uganda is the lack of rubbish bins.  The obvious consequence of this is litter – nobody seems to give a second thought to tossing it onto the street or into a hedge.  It’s such a beautiful country that it’s odd people don’t seem to care.

It became even more frustrating after visiting Kigali in Rwanda, just a few hours’ drive away.  The residents and authorities there clearly take pride in their city, with litter bins provided, and well-kempt flower beds all around.  In my luggage I had a spare pair of shoes and my underwear in plastic bags inside my holdall…at the border, this was opened and the plastic bags thrown away as they are banned in Rwanda.  Extreme perhaps, but all part of the same intention to keep the country clean.

No longer could I put the situation in Uganda down to cultural differences.  It’s a chicken/egg situation.  Do people here litter simply because there are no bins, or if they were provided, would people use them given their apparent ambivalence?  Who knows, but there’s only one way to find out!


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