Having grown up in the Naguru slum, Samuel Malinga made a lifetime resolution to increase access to sanitation services in remote and inaccessible communities throughout Uganda. It was this same zeal that prompted him to launch Sanitation Africa in 2015, a platform where he holds the position as the founder and Managing director, aimed at improving the access to clean water and sanitation in Africa.
When Samuel was 12 years old, he moved to Naguru slum in the Ugandan city of Kampala, where he was able to experience first-hand, the systemic problem of poor sanitation and waste management. He is quite knowledgeable and experienced on issues and solutions related to water pumps. His expertise spans through all types of water pumps that stems from work in several water projects based predominantly but not limited to Uganda.
Samuel has experience in research and development of low-cost desludging pumps and transportation devices, toilet substructures and super structures for different areas and having gathered expertise in this field, it breaks Samuel’s heart to realize that many people in his immediate community are victims of the horrors of improper sanitation. In his words “It is so painful to me that children die of preventable diseases brought about by simple sanitation issues that we know how to resolve.”
In Uganda, over 95% of the population uses latrines and septic tanks, and 60% of these pits are consistently full in Kampala. Coupled with a rapid population growth, the majority of the population resides in unplanned settlements, which are congested and lack proper sanitation and these were the reasons why Samuel decided to improve the quality of life of Africans through Sanitation Africa.
Sanitation Africa has constructed over 358 toilets, reaching more than 1000 households in remote and inaccessible communities throughout Uganda. “We are expanding across the country and taking toilets closer to the people,” says Samuel. “our team is comprised of young people who have the energy and passion to deliver decent sanitation services to the community, and we are helping some of the most vulnerable households along the way. Coming up with a solution has made me very proud to contribute to Sustainable Development Goal 6.”
Also, Samuel has sound knowledge in project planning and management, and construction skills in water supply, sanitation, roads and agricultural infrastructure. He participated in The UN General Assembly in 2016 as a UN Young Leader for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), he was also a speaker at World Youth Forum in Egypt, he was one of the 8 social entrepreneurs selected out of 960 applicants by Social Entrepreneurship Forum in Sweden, one of the 1000 young global talents that participated in the UNLEASH Innovation Lab 2017 in Denmark, keynote speaker at “Innovation as a Key Enabler to Power Africa” conference organized by RES4MED in Rome-Italy.
In relation to Sanitation Africa, Samuel has made various political statements on water and sanitation issues in Budapest and Hungary, participated during World Toilet Day recently held in India. Till date, he is a member of Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) and the WASH Forum in Kampala.