Utilisation of Water Purification “Tablets” at Household Level in Namibia and Tanzania


Generally disinfection of water at household level can be achieved using several soluble tablets or chemicals which have been proven to render water to be microbiologically safe. The use of disinfectants at household levels has been reported to contribute to the reduction of waterborne diseases in areas with limited supply of piped water. Water guard is produced and widely used in Tanzania especially in the rural and informal settlements; whilst in Namibia, water marker and Aqua tabs are imported and distributed to similar communities. Sodium Hypochlorite, a chlorine base chemical which is either in powder or tablet form is widely used in the two countries. Through informed consent community volunteers were used for the collection of water from shallow wells, which was subsequently treated and analysed in Tanzania. Volunteers were also asked about their methods of water treatment and storage. In Namibia, information on appropriate use of purification chemicals at household level was obtained through desktop review and key informants. The aim of this study was to investigate the effectiveness and proper utilisation of the water purification chemicals at household level in the two countries. The appropriate use of chemical doses provides 100% disinfection efficiency with chlorine residue of less than 0.3 mg/l which is within the recommended limits for WHO. The authors conclude that household water purification chemicals are effective against pathogens; however the chemicals’ effectiveness depends on appropriate use in terms of mixing, handling and hygiene of container used. A common problem experienced by Namibia and Tanzania is related to improper mixing, which affects the taste of water, and thus influences the user’s choice of prolonged use.

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Kgabi, N. , Mashauri, D. and Hamatui, N. (2014) Utilisation of Water Purification “Tablets” at Household Level in Namibia and Tanzania. Open Journal of Applied Sciences, 4, 560-566. doi: 10.4236/ojapps.2014.414055.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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