A tour of the streets of Lagos by SaharaReporters revealed how filthier the state has become since the suspension of the state’s waste management agency.
It could be recalled that in February 2017, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode signed into law a new policy under Environmental Management, Protection and Sustainable Development Bill, 2017, which suspended the state’s agreement with Private Sector Participants (PSP) and transferred management of waste in the state to an undisclosed foreign company, Visionscape Group.
Before this was officially announced, the State Governor, Mr. Ambode, had ordered Lagosians to stop paying Lagos Waste Management Agency (a company that partners with private organizations to collect and dispose of waste) for waste collection and disposal.
Arising from the signed contract with foreign investors, over 350 PSP operators and about 10,000 waste collectors and cleaners would be rendered jobless.
Reacting to this move, operators of domestic and commercial wastes in Lagos State filed a suit against the state government and the Commissioner for Environment, asking the court to restrain the state and any foreign operator from taking over the collection, disposal, and management of waste in the state.
Though Lagos State Commissioner for the Environment, Babatunde Adejare, had promised the deployment of over 600 Mercedes Benz compactors, 11 months since the announcement, no compactors have been seen in the state, the state has become dirtier and heaps of diet now surfaces in every streets and corner of the states.
SaharaReporters beamed searchlight on some local governments in the state including Ikeja, the state capital and discovered that they are now dirtier, rising from contracting waste management to the foreign organization. It was also revealed that no mechanism has been put in place to ensure clean environment thereby putting Lagosians at risk of contracting diseases.
Wastes are now being heaped on roads, streets junctions, bus stops and any available open space in the neighborhood.
Lagosians are urging the Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode to either compel the foreign investors to ensure streets of Lagos is made clean and remain clean or return management of waste disposal to LAWMA and PSP operators.