Anambra State is set to have a new waste management. For starters, the government has banned open and indiscriminate disposal of waste in the state. The act of dumping waste on ill-assorted dumpsites on the streets now belongs to the past. The new deal is to put all household wastes in a bag which is placed on the frontage of the house for collection by contracted service providers who are charged with the responsibility of evacuating the wastes in all the constituencies of the state.
This new approach will urgently tackle the problem of having unattended garbage sites, heavy with stench and the concomitant diseases. It does not make any sense whatsoever to allow waste to accumulate on the roadside before clearing it. The advanced way is to deal with the waste house-by-house with the support of the service providers.
Some 31 service providers will lead the charge of promptly evacuating the wastes across Anambra State. The well-drilled service providers are armed with basic waste collection and evacuation equipment including trucks, pail loaders, compactors, evacuators and swing-arm, etc. The service providers will offer Anambra State the requisite duty with a verified minimum of three months’ working capital and at least three years of waste collection experience.
It is incumbent on everybody who lives in Anambra State to abide by the new waste disposal arrangement. Procuring nylon bags for packing the garbage is the first duty. It would not take much of an effort to place the waste bag on the frontage of the house or compound. After doing this, it becomes the responsibility of the service provider to evacuate the waste.
Infringement of the arranged process will of course attract penalties. The government will frown at anybody flinging waste indiscriminately across the streets or highways from their vehicles. It used to be the case that people formerly would not even bother to package the wastes properly at the dumpsites creating eyesores of wastes all over the place. It is said that when wrongdoing is not addressed for a long time it tends to become a tradition. Poor waste disposal has had its day in the state and must necessarily come to an end.
The ban on open and indiscriminate disposal of waste is in tune with Governor Charles Chukwuma Soludo’s insistence on cleanliness across board in all the affairs of the state. Having clean homes and streets will enhance the Clean and Green Revolution that he has inaugurated in Anambra State.
Being clean ought to start from the home. It is in the same manner that parents ought to start the training of the children from home before sending them to school. When the young ones are made to abide by the rules of cleanliness at home there is no doubt whatsoever that they would ever encourage dirt and slovenliness in the wider public. When young and old people embrace and practice clean habits disease takes a walk from the lives of the people.
Now that the rainy season has come, there would no longer be the unsightly domains of rain-beaten and stinking dumpsites on major streets and corners. Taking away the wastes from the doorsteps of Ndi-Anambra is obviously the right way to go. It ensures that minors who may not be properly groomed in the proper way to dispose waste are not allowed to become a menace while disposing refuse in public places. A child burdened with taking refuse to a public refuse bin in the street will of course do it without the necessary attention to proper handling. But if such a child is charged with packing the refuse into a polythene bag to be placed in front of the house he or she cannot afford to make any mistake because this can easily be seen and promptly corrected by the parents or guardians.
The seamless approach to waste management by the public and private sector has always been practised in more advanced societies. It is not the modern way asking families to travel long distances to dispose of their accumulated wastes. Through the use of the service providers, the waste is never allowed to accumulate before it is disposed of according to the rules made by the government because targets are set. Any family or service provider failing in his duties will of course will be appropriately sanctioned.
Enforcement of the sanctions is crucial to putting in place a clean environment all over Anambra State. It is expected that the people will obey the rules, and the service providers will ensure adequate professionalism in the discharge of their duties. Like the Nitrogen Cycle, all the crucial linkages must be effective for Anambra State to have a clean environment to be cherished by all.
SIR PAUL NWOSU
Commissioner for Information