By Inyali Peter
Cross River State Commissioner for Environment, Engr. Mike Eraye has blamed the current heaps of refuse in Calabar on the dwindling economy of the nation.
Eraye who spoke with journalists Tuesday, May 31 during his inspection of waste evacuation at Palm Street Extension, Calabar South Local Government area of the state, disclosed that government was doing everything within her reach to ensure the city is cleared of refuse ‘in the next few days’.
The Commissioner also regretted that the equipment for waste evacuation have collapsed completely but assured that government has concluded plans to procure new equipment in the next three months.
While appealing to Cross Riverians to remain patient with the government to address the situation, Eraye noted that the public must also live up to their responsibility by maintaining a clean and hygienic environment.
According to him, “Waste equipment is currently off the shelves of the government because of the current economic situation of the country. The economy has really slowed down the time and period we intended to offload platform that can deal with waste evacuation situation in more civilized and more efficient manner.
“This is supposed to be a simple job by two people; the driver and his assistant when the bins are in good condition. But our equipment have collapsed but government is doing all it can to out breach the weakness in the platform that is available for waste evacuation.
“In organized cities, waste is program to be conveyed to the central collection point at a predetermine time. But here, few minutes after this evacuation, you will see people feeling the place again. The people must also play their part by maintaining clean environment and conveying waste to the central collection point should be at night”.
He maintained that, “We have plan in place where the public would be educated and sensitized on their role to return Calabar to the cleanest and greenest city in Nigeria”.
Eraye added that to ensure effective and efficient waste evacuation, his ministry has divided Calabar into nine different zones where some zones will be out sourced to private individuals and companies.
“We have divided Calabar into nine different zones. We have concluded plans to out source some zones to private companies which will work under the direct supervision of the waste management agency”. He concluded.
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