The Lagos State Commissioner for the Environment, Mr. Babatunde Durosinmi-Etti has said that decrepit waste compactors, often relied upon by PSP operators to cart away refuse, have constituted a major hindrance to effective waste disposal in the State.
Durosinmi-Etti stated this in Alausa on Thursday during the familiarisation and fact-finding visit by the Federal Commissioner for the Lagos State Office of the Public Complaints Commission, Mr. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf.
He said that the lack of adequate roadworthy compactors contributed in no small measure to weaken the capacity of PSP operators to serve their clients efficiently, thereby causing a delay in the frequency of evacuating waste in different localities within the State.
“As evident from the re-certification exercise carried out in Alimosho Local Government Area for example, out of the 44 compactors presented for the exercise, only 17 compactors were certified to be in good working condition”, he said.
He decried the situation in which compactors that were not in good condition broke down incessantly on the road and caused traffic congestion as well as unnecessary hardship to road users.
The Commissioner reiterated that one of the criteria for being assigned as an operator was to have at least two functional compactors which must be certified by the government to be in good working condition.
“As a result of their poor condition these compactors often find it difficult to navigate the dumpsites and incessantly break down to create bottlenecks and delays at the dumpsites”, he said.
Noting that this unhealthy development was capable of jeopardising efforts of the State Government to achieve a cleaner Lagos, Durosinmi-Etti said that the present administration was exploring ways of making available to PSP operators soft loan facilities through the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSTEF) to make it easy for them to increase their fleet of compactors.
He maintained that the State Government was determined to remove all bottlenecks hindering seamless waste collection and disposal operations as it was making concerted effort to achieve minimal turnaround time at the dumpsites by enhancing regulatory measures as LAWMA was being encouraged to start sanctioning dumpsite operators for delays.
Durosinmi-Etti stated that to address attitudinal issues, the State Government had been carrying out regular advocacy with Local Government Officials, Community Development Committees (CDCs) and Community Development Associations (CDAs) as well as PSP operators in the various Local Government/Local Council Development Areas of the State.
Earlier, the Federal Commissioner for Public Complaints Commission, Mr. Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf gave kudos to the Lagos State Government and Ministry of the Environment for their efforts in environmental management, saying that there had never been any public complaint forwarded to the Ministry by the Public Complaints Commission that had not been resolved.