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Surcharge waste collectors – Sanitation Minister to MMDAs

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The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources is pleading with Municipal Assemblies to impose fines on garbage collectors who have been hired but fail to pick up mounds of trash in a timely manner or take too long to do so.

When inspecting communities between the Odaw River and Nima Maamobi after the recent rains, the Minister, Freda Prempeh, said this.

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Madam Prempeh stressed that levying fees on these garbage collectors was a vital step to push them to fulfill their commitments and guarantee timely rubbish collection while also expressing her unhappiness with the dismal situation of bad sanitation.

“We cannot always sit back for government to look for money to evacuate refuse, to drill drains, to dredge drains, to desilt gutters; we have to change our attitude. This refuse you see behind me is under the purview of the assembly. They have signed contracts with private service providers, and they are supposed to ensure that private service providers clear and collect the garbage.

“We should not sit down as an assembly and take excuses from the service providers that my car has broken down and all that. There should be a provision in the by-law to surcharge them. If they don’t pick up the refuse on time, they should be surcharged. So as an assembly, we will collaborate with you but all these refuse is under the purview of the assemblies, and they are supposed to ensure that it is cleared by the private service providers,” she said.

Additionally, Madam Prempeh stated that she was open to negotiations about the creation of specialized environmental tribunals that would make it easier to prosecute crimes involving sanitation.

The reason for this is that there have been increasing demands highlighting the need of these specialist courts in hastening sanitation matters, which usually experience delays when presented before district courts.

“I don’t think it is just about delay at the court… The advocacy is still on, but I believe that together as a ministry, the Regional Coordinating Council, and the assemblies, we should be able to put our heads together and ensure that the right thing is done.

“I believe that if we enforce our by-laws, we will not be taking people to the sanitation courts. So we have to start from the basis, from where the problem is coming from and that is the gap. And once we’ve been able to find the problem, we should be able to solve it,” she noted.

 

 

 

 

 

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