Accra is filthy, Kumasi is filthy, every part of Ghana is filthy are the complaints we hear from citizens of Ghana every now and then. But who creates the filth?
There has been much reportage on waste management over the years yet as a country we seem not to be making any headway in finding a lasting solution to it. Recently, there was a media report that the Sarbah land fill site in Accra was near to its full capacity. This led to a sudden stop of refuse collection from peoples homes for close to a month in some parts of Accra.
One can totally understand the frustration residents in some parts of Accra had to go through living with filth in their homes. However, as individuals, what steps or measures are we taking to help reduce the challenges Government is going through to salvage the situation?
I find it difficult understanding why in this 21st century an individual can drink pure water from a sachet rubber and throw it on the streets.
I remember growing up and watching adverts on TV educating citizens not to litter around. Waste bins were placed at vantage points on our streets to help solve the situation of littering. So the question is why do we still litter around?
Though I agree with people who say the bins were not being managed properly since there were reports of bins getting full without being emptied for several days, I think as citizens we have done ourselves a great disservice by allowing the issue of littering to fester. These bins which were meant solely to dispose of litters on our streets were later being used by people to dispose of their household waste. Though these bins are nearly extinct now, it should not be a reason for us to make our streets filthy.
We see people littering around but how many of us are bold enough to ask them to desist from such acts? The issue of littering which is a major concern when it comes to waste management should be addressed by all and sundry and not left to government. As individuals and citizens of this country we need to check our attitude regarding matters concerning littering.
Aside the issue of littering, we need to tackle the issue of waste separation in our various homes. There has been much talk of separating decomposable waste from non-decomposable ones in our homes. It has been found out that this method can help the country in its efforts to move into recycling of wastes and also converting the waste into energy. An environmentalist, Mr. Reginald Akilakpa Sawyer has also come out to propose a permanent solution to waste management in the country.
He talks about converting waste to energy and using the residue for fertilizer. If all these are to materialize, the issue of separation of waste should be taken seriously by everybody. We need to start from our various homes, offices, institutions and schools.
To conclude, I believe every citizen has a role to play in finding lasting solutions to our waste management challenges in the country. The points raised above are just but few ways we can help out. The government is doing its part, we must also check our attitude towards littering and how we go about disposing of our waste. When Ghana is clean, it is clean for all of us and not just the government.
Long live Ghana!
Source: NABIL AHMED RUFAI FOCUS FM/KNUST- KUMASI
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