An environmental profile of an urban squatter settlement, Chawama compound in Lusaka

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Ndhlema, Deliwe
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The growth of squatter settlements is a phenomenon common in urban centres in many African countries including Zambia. Chawama squatter settlement, which is on the out-skirts of Lusaka originated in the 1950's and has since independence grown in size and number. The growth of this settlement is taking place on such a large scale that it has since been recognised and legalised by the council. The study aimed at compiling an Environmental profile of Chawama that provided contemporary information that would be useful for municipal planning purposes. This was achieved by identifying, examining and assessing the socio-economic and the Environmental conditions of Chawama. The study established that Chawama compound as an unplanned settlement lacks essential services. Among the symptoms of this social deprivation are worsening public health, inadequate household income, minimum levels of sanitation, erratic and inadequate water supply. This has led to the general degradation of the environment and the outbreak of environmental related illnesses such as malaria, cholera, diarrhoea and respiratory tract infections. There is need to control the problems emanating from the squatter settlement and this will involve the participation of the community, the private sector and the major stake-holders in Government who are affected and have an effect on the development of the squatter settlement.
Squatter settlement , Environmental profile , Chawama compound-Zambia