Water quality monitoring in developing countries is inadequate, especially in stream water affected by urban effluents and runoff. The purpose of this study was to investigate heavy metal contaminants in the Nakivubo Stream water in Kampala, Uganda. Water samples Nakivubo Channelized Stream, tributaries and industrial effluents that drain into the stream were collected and analysed for the total elemental concentration using flame atomic absorption spectrophotometer. The results showed that: 1) the wastewater was highly enriched with lead and manganese above the maximum permissible limit; 2) the levels of dissolved oxygen were below the maximum permissible limit, while the biological oxygen demand was above the maximum permissible limit. All industrial effluents/wastewater were classified as strong (> 220 mg/L). Factor analysis results reveal two sources of pollutants; 1) mixed origin or chemical phenomena of industrial and vehicular emissions and 2) multiple origin of lead (vehicular, commercial establishment and industrial). In conclusion, Nakivubo Channelized Stream water is not enriched with heavy metals. These heavy metals (lead, cadmium and zinc) were rapidly removed by co-precipitation with manganese and iron hydroxides and total dissolved solids into stream sediments. This phenomena is controlled by pH in water.
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