‘Waste management reform’ll strengthen environment’

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The Lagos State Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Babatunde Adejare, has said the on-going reforms in the solid waste management tagged the “Cleaner Lagos Initiative” it is a way to sustain the environment.

Adejare spoke at the February edition of the monthly media parley of his Ministry in Alausa, last Monday.

He pointed out that the implication of the reform was that residential waste collection and the supporting backbone would be concessioned to investors who would deploy modern equipment and machinery equipped with global information system (GIS) facilities.

Adejare stated further that the Cleaner Lagos Initiative was aimed to protect the environment, human health and social living standards of Lagos residents by promoting a harmonised and holistic approach to environmental challenges and ensuring improved operational efficiency and addressing the lacunae in the existing legislation to expand the scope of Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) to enable it enforce, regulate and generate revenue from the waste management process.

Other goals of the initiative according to Adejare are: identifying and harnessing wealth creation opportunities in the waste management sector and putting in place a proactive Flood Prevention Strategy (FPS) that will ensure all-year- round drainage maintenance.

The Cleaner Lagos Initiative, he further explained, would also involve the development of new and rehabilitation of old facilities, such as Engineered Landfill Sites (Epe I & II and Badagry), Transfer Loading Stations (Agege, Oshodi and Simpson), Material Recovery Facilities with recycling, recovery and waste reduction efforts.

The commissioner disclosed that the initiative would create 27,500 new jobs by engaging the unemployed youth and the existing 4,500 street sweepers and transforming them to Community Sanitation Workers (CSW) to carry out manual sweeping in all the inner streets in the 377 wards of the state.

“The Community Sanitation Workers will be uniformly kitted, insured, paid above the minimum wage and equipped to tackle the challenges of their newly defined scope of work” he said.

He stressed that the Lagos State Government was determined to give to Lagosians a sustainable and functional environment which they would be proud of since environment remained the bedrock upon which development and prosperity rest.

Meanwhile, Adejare stated, while presenting the achievements of his Ministry in the Month of February, that efforts to regenerate the environment continued with the enforcement of compliance with sanitation regulations in  markets, eateries, toilets, car wash, event centres, filling stations and shopping malls across the state.

He also stated that the Ministry supervised the construction of 19 drainage channels to de-flood various areas in the State, while it cleaned 1,960 meters of collector drains across the state.

In the same vein, 748 tenements and 160 private facilities were monitored for wastewater compliance, while 547 abatement notices were served on tenements and private facilities respectively and poster removal was undertaken in 110 streets.

On the beautification and greening programme, the State produced 4,472 plant seedlings in its nurseries in Ikorodu and Oko-oba, Agege

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