Lokoja wears new look…
Residents commend prompt evacuation of refuse, urge Kogi govt to sustain tempo
LOKOJA the Kogi State capital may be wearing a new look as heaps of refuse that have overtaken stretches of major roads in the city some five months ago seem to have disappeared.
The eyesore, which was growing daily at strategic points meant for refuse collection by the Sanitation Agency, have given way to a cleaner environment due to the procurement of equipment for the agency by the state government.
The Guardian’s observation around the city revealed that most of the collection points at Adankolo, Obasanjo Square close to the old market, Federal University Lokoja Junction and the Catholic Cathedral collection points that used to be filled with garbage are now clean.
Compactor trucks were seen evacuating refuse at the designated points almost on a regular basis.
Before now only one of the compactor trucks was functional but recently new purchases were made and three of the compactor trucks are now working.
Communal waste bins have also been mounted at some strategic points in the city where refuse are collected and evacuated as soon as they are filled to the brim.
These waste bins which were recently brought on board were another positive development that has helped the agency in prompt evacuation of waste.
The roll-on-roll-off or communal waste bin, which is a very big container where everyone dumps their refuse is really the ideal thing but only three have been procured for now while the agency said it was expecting about 45 of them.
The Guardian investigations revealed that there are still so many bottlenecks that may make the current successes by the agency to be short-lived.
A recent visit to the agency revealed two skip loaders in helpless condition as technicians were struggling to put them in order.
It was gathered that they were purchased as second hand and since they had been out of use for some time, they may be developing faults intermittently, which may hamper the genuine efforts of the workers at the agency.
An environmentalist who spoke on condition of anonymity said government should have been sincere enough to have committed the money for the two skip loaders to purchase a new one that would work regularly.
He said the issue of sanitation and its complication should not be treated as any other business as usual where people cut corners for their selfish interest.
Though some residents attributed the prompt response on the side of the agency to the bashing the incumbent government had been receiving from its opponents over the filthiness of the city, with the forthcoming election where it is seeking re election, it had to wake up.
Mr. Suleiman Negedu who lives in Phase Two housing estate expressed satisfaction with the new lease of life saying that at least for the moment residents would live without the pungent smell from the roadside.
He expressed the hope that it would not be short lived saying “it should not be one of the gimmicks of pre-election that may fizzle out when another tenure begins.”