Connect with us

The Mega City / Life

A city of heaps of rubbish, dirt



Residents of Lagos State are complaining loudly over the heaps of refuse and dirt that have appeared on the streets for some weeks now unattended. ELIZABETH OGUNBAMOWO reports


An observable trend in mega cities is the healthiness of the environment. Governments of such cities ensure the hygiene and wholeness of these societies usually metes out appropriate measures. Lagos as a mega city has not been left out of this chase for cleanliness.

First, it was the mandatory environmental sanitation exercise for all in the state every last Saturday. Over time, environmental sanitation became compulsory for traders and market women every Thursday of the week.

Next was the PSP scheme under LAWMA and presently the Cleaner Lagos initiative (CLI), all in a bid to make Lagos clean. However, despite all the efforts of both government and private individuals in ensuring a cleaner and safer state, Lagos is unfortunately not getting any tidier.

From observations, on the streets of Lagos are chunks of dirt spilling out of the rubbish bins provided by the state government. The entrance into people’s homes also has its share of the eyesore as heaps of dumps have become persistently present as flies and worms have a field day on the cans.

At virtually every bus stop in the state now are sacks of dirt, piled up, while some particles escape the tied orifices thereby providing offensive odour to passers-by, who are left with no option than to block the passage of such decayed air into their nasal system with their palms.

This, according to some residents, is as a result of the minimal visit of the PSP trucks to the areas. New Telegraph observed heap of wastes under the bridge at Iyana Ipaja, with little or no attention showed towards getting them cleared any time soon.

This ugly and foul smelly sight has rendered the environment inimical to the health of traders, who sell under the bridge and air borne diseases could be contacted through inhaling the odour that oozes from the waste bins stationed underneath the bridge. A respondent, Mrs. Aminat Adegoke, who sells pepper under the bridge shared her view with New Telegraph.

“The refuse is so much that it falls out of the trash bin and litter the floor.

The smell from the bin is so terrible that I often go to a friend’s shop opposite mine to take some fresh air in. Because I sell by the road, I can’t eat here. The flies are too much that they wrestle my food with me. So, I go inside my friend’s shop to eat.

Even the flies perch on what I sell but I know people will wash it before cooking. Some will not even branch to buy” she said. Mrs. Adegoke disclosed that she has been selling at Iyana Ipaja for seven years and that the big LAWMA waste bin was formerly positioned inside the Iyana Ipaja motor park but after the demise of the former Chairman of the National Union Of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Lagos State Chapter, Alhaji Saka Saula, it was moved to the under bridge.

Mrs. Temitope Alabi, who sells SIM cards and recharge cards under the bridge, said: “Personally, I am not comfortable with the level of dirt here.

Every morning, I sell my things close to the road but because of the Kick Against Indiscipline (KAI) task force around, I had to move back exactly beside the wastes, so that I won’t be harassed because there is no money for me to rent a shop. Initially, the big LAWMA bin here is meant for the market people only but we see some unknown residents probably coming from other streets near the road throwing dirty anyhow around the bin.”

She added that the refuse is disgusting and has been of disadvantage to her business as people sometimes do not have the patience to wait around to register SIM cards. Meanwhile, it is a profit making avenue for others. “I know a particular woman who comes here to pick something like papers but I never asked what she used them for, as it was not my business.

Some ‘ABOKI’ also scatter the refuse and sometimes enter the bin to pick some things valuable to them into their sacks” she added. She suggested that more waste bins be given to residents that do not have so that they would stop bringing their dirt under the bridge and the LAWMA should try to reach Iyana Ipaja twice a week.

Mr. Alaba Oguntade and Miss Bose, who jointly sell mobile phones on promo, advertised in the trunk of their vehicle under the bridge, said that the refuse had been left unattended to by the LAWMA since last year. They claimed that the refuse does not affect their market but affects them health wise. Mr. Alaba complained about always having a relapse of malaria.

Asking about how they coped and ate, they responded simultaneously “we just have to cope”.

They said they were used to the environment even though the odour worsens day-by-day. Miss Bose added that whenever they bought food and had to eat, they went inside the vehicle to eat to reduce the exposure of the food to the atmosphere.

On the other side of the under bridge, which has a bus shed labelled ‘Iyana Ipaja bus stop’, refuse was also scattered at the bus stop.

A lady, Miss Blessing Akpan, who schedules lotto tickets for interested customers, told New Telegraph why she thought LAWMA reduced cleaning operations. According to New Telegraph findings, cart pushers popularly known as available alternatives to the PSP trucks have been suspected to be involved in dumping refuse at inappropriate places.

In reaction to this, the Lagos State government has arrested over 30 cart pushers in the state with a warning to arrest others who engage in the trade, last week. Corroborating these observations and reports, Lagos residents speak on the current environmental health of the state.

Mrs. Osuki Rachael, an academician said that the arrest of the cart pushers is not warranted, stating that before government’s full participation in dirt removal, cart pushers had been in the trade of clearing refuse and Lagos was not so dirty then. “Those that the Task force arrested, were they caught while dropping refuse at the wrong places or they just saw them going and arrested them?

They shouldn’t just make decisions arbitrarily.” Speaking with New Telegraph, Mr. Alabi Omoboriowo, stated that truly, Lagos is getting dirtier and this, according to him, is not a welcome development.

He believes that there are some bad eggs who do not want Lagos to develop into a full-blown mega city that it ought to be.

He averred that some of the private individuals who were into the PSP initiative have decided to pay the government in a bad coin since they were asked to stop for the CLI to kick-start, thus have become the brain behind the littered dirt all over the state.

For him, cart pushers were better alternatives who could help clear the bin before the arrival of the PSP whose visit is irregular. “If you visit my street now, you would think you are in a dump site. Everywhere is just dirty and nobody is doing anything about it. In fact, see this market. Is it not too dirty?

Yet, we observe environmental sanitation every Thursday. I don’t think the problem lies in not opening your shop before 10am but in taking the refuse away.

Cart pushers are not the problem, everyone should contribute to having a better and cleaner Lagos” Mrs. Ayeni, a trader spoke with New Telegraph on the issue. She said that the arrest of the cart pushers is not the wisest thing to do now.

According to her, Lagos is excessively dirty to stop any alternative means of clearing filth on the streets.

“For the past one month, PSP buses have not been seen anywhere around us here, we welcomed the return of the cart pushers, who were stopped some years back. Now, they are arresting them. I do not think it is proper to do that.

These people were the ones helping us make our environment clean at least. With the arrest of the cart pushers, things would get worse; people would start dumping refuse even at their neighbour’s doorpost because the thing keeps piling up every day.”

However, she pleaded with the state government to first make the Cleaner Lagos Initiative more pronounced and efficient in such a way that people would not be told to make use of the CLI cans but would do so willingly after testing the efficiency of the initiative. Mr. Davis, a proprietor in Idimu said that the Lagos State government knows the best policy to put in place in ensuring a cleaner Lagos.

He believes that the arrest of the cart pushers must have been based on thorough investigation by the LAGESC Task Force.

“These cart pushers come here and I patronize them especially when LAWMA people do not come around but who knows where they dump the refuse truly. What if they come to my school to pick refuse and dump it at the bus stop. How will I know? We don’t follow them to where they dump the filth, so we should not blame the state government.”

Mr. Davis, however did not dispute the fact that Lagos is getting dirtier, thus , pleaded with the state government to ensure that the new initiative becomes proficient and wellorganised in such a way that all the parts of the state have a feel of the CLI.

New Telegraph gathered that the heaps of dump at various places in the state have turned into a trade for some people who sell nose-cover to residents and passers-by who could not stand the offensive smell.

However, the state government is hellbent on punishing offenders who refuse to comply with state directives on the appropriate means of clearing refuse.

In a statement released by SP Olayinka Egbeyemi, the Chairman of the State’s Task Force on Environmental and other special offences (environmental unit), “the state government has vowed to go out against all the saboteurs and all their sponsors to punish them in line with the provisions of the law.”

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

The Mega City / Life

Collaborating for cleaner Lagos



As part of measures towards ensuring safety of the citizens in a mega city, the Lagos State government has left no stone unturned in providing for a healthy environment by adopting appropriate waste management techniques with the recent one being Cleaner Lagos Initiative (CLI) managed by Visionscape resources.



However, there seems to be a recent upsurge of filthiness in the state as Lagos streets and medians have become mini depot of dirt.



The streets of Lagos seem to be in aggressive competition for highest prize of the dirtiest street. Dirt litters everywhere with wraps and leftover bursting out of bins and sacks accommodating such. Day after day, the filth goes beyond the streets to road medians, bus stops and market areas.



Concerned Lagosians spoke with New Telegraph on this new development. Mr. Stanley Okoro, a resident of Arobaba in Idimu said that the manner in which people dispose of their wastes after several attempts by the government to keep Lagos clean was not encouraging.



He believed that the mentality of most Nigerians, which is that of individualism, was responsible for the activities of some, who drop their waste by the roadside.



All they do is just to get rid of the wastes from their houses. “This is not fair at all. It is good to want to keep our houses clean but doing that at the expense of others’ health is not fair. How can a human being in his right senses drop dirt at the bus stop and still live with a clean conscience. That is a strategic place to spread diseases because a lot of people alight from buses at that same spot.”



He stated that when people start thinking beyond themselves to include other people’s feelings, such things would be reduced. He also called on the government and the managers of CLI to ensure the efficiency of the CLI in Lagos State. Mr. Ayobami Franklin, a barber, confirms that Lagos is truly dirty. “It is only the blind that would say that they don’t know that Lagos is dirty. It is obvious; it is there for all to see.


The streets are dirty but the markets are worse and now, waiting at the bus stops has become a problem, flies would just be perching on someone anyhow because of the refuse dumped there,” he said.



He asserted that Lagos residents are not to be blamed but government who is not stable in waste management policies. He noted that the government does not know the policy to adopt to make Lagos a cleaner place. “Even the new policy, CLI, has already started failing”.



He, however, believed that the people needed re-orientation first before anything because every policy would fail without people’s cooperation.



In a similar vein, Mrs Olabimpe Tijani believes that the people’s cooperation is key because “the waste we are talking about here is not coming from Ambode’s office, neither is it coming from the house of whoever is in charge of the CLI and this is not affecting them.



We are the ones that should be responsible for our actions. Government cannot do everything for us. After all, there was a primitive way of dealing with dirt which was burning.



Now, they told us not to burn again because there is something called Global Warming and decided to give us bin bags.



How many people would say they use the bin bags? Rather, people prefer to turn their wastes into the drainage when it starts raining, which is not proper. Let’s all support the government and everyone would be in a better position.” Mr. Rasheed Olowolayemo noted that the CLI is already toeing the path of the PSP and this, he believes, is a cause for alarm.


According to him, the PSP’s visitation interval to streets takes too much for the wastes produced on streets of a mega city like Lagos. The Visionscape’s waste trucks are also taking too long before picking waste from each bus stops “and what I have noticed is that the Visionscape trucks do not go into the streets. They pick refuse by the roadside and just move on.



Are they not communicating something to the people?” he quipped. In a reaction to the presumed inefficiencies of the CLI, the operations manager of the CLI, Mr. Aravind.V, spoke at great length in an interview with New Telegraph.


He said:”The government is focusing on waste management because the scheme has so many facets: health related issues, hazards and hygiene conditions. Moreover, cleanliness is godliness. Whatever waste generated has to be handled scientifically. So, we have been given the opportunity to bring better waste management system to Lagos.


The waste management companies of the past was working but the collection mechanism was a little bit poor. According to the information we gathered, in some areas, they were not constant in their visits to those areas and the truth is that once trash is generated, it should not be kept for a longer time.



It should be taken to the appropriate place. I am from India and I have been to some places in Lagos. I have not seen much difference between the Indian metropolis and Lagos city.



The people’s habits are almost the same. The government has been focusing on cleaner environment and all the officials over there are working hard to bring better waste management practices. So, for the last 20 years I have been working in this field”.



He maintained that the goal of a cleaner Lagos could only be achieved through a continuous and collaborative effort that needs some dedication, honesty and sincerity.



Citing Singapore as an example, he averred that 30 years ago, Singapore was very dirty but had the goal of making their city a better place and this involved a lot of sacrifices on the part of the government and the governed. He believes that if Lagos residents see this as a collective responsibility, the goal of a cleaner Lagos would be achieved in no time at all.


Aravind said that the state is in a transformation stage and that the CLI would take some time before its impact would be felt in the state but solicited for people’s cooperation and optimum support.


Also, he revealed that the company has plans of bringing in compactors and various equipment with which the waste can be managed properly, stating that the people need to be patient with the company.


He further stated: “We cannot expect 100 per cent perfection in the first place. So, basically, what we are doing now is to sensitize the people.



The people’s mindset has to change. They have to see it as their own house, their streets, their wastes. They have to take care of their trash. People should be responsible and not wait to be held accountable to how they dispose their trash before they get it right. Everybody really and strongly desires for a change but change does not happen in a day. So, it takes time.


This is a large project and you would see the results. It may take one year and a half but the result would be visible, so that ultimately, a day would come that there would be no waste on Lagos roads and we can say that Lagos is clean,” he said.

Continue Reading

The Mega City / Life

A different way of budgeting at Alimosho



The current administration of the Alimosho Local Government under the leadership of Hon. Jelili Sulaimon, has really proven its worth. Barely three months in office, the administration has organised a stakeholders meeting where the people’s representatives from each ward and district were given the opportunity to present the needs of their people to the government.




This was done with a view to incorporating the requests into the 2018 budget. Some days ago, the administration organized another stakeholders meeting which involved the presentation of the 2018 budget to the stakeholders for executive endorsement.


The budget christened, “Budget of Human and Infrastructural Development” focused essentially on construction, education, health, capacity building, social engineering and poverty alleviation. Chairman of the occasion during his speech had claimed that the budget was not yet approved because of the acknowledgement of the fact that people are the ones to award the budget executive endorsement.



The 2018 budget for the local government which stands at the sum of N1, 445,257,332.74 (One billion, four hundred and forty five million, two hundred and fifty seven thousand, three hundred and thirty two naira, seventy four kobo is 24.9 per cent higher than the LG’s budget for the year 2017. It is made up of N370,930,443.83 (25.66%) capital expenditure and N1,074,326,888.91 (74.34%) recurrent expenditure.



Based on the breakdown, the recurrent expenditure includes human development and overhead while the capital expenditure includes the construction of a good number of roads as presented during the November meeting, construction of the Akowonjo Primary healthcare centre, provision of streetlights, and rehabilitation of markets, among others.


Hon. Jelili specifically stated that the budget also included the procurement of skill acquisition machines for all the governmentowned primary schools in the area. He stated that the machines would be used to train children in the senior classes in any trade of choice.


This, he believed, would not only be to equip the children for the future but also to provide them complete education.


Speaking on processes of arriving at the budget, Superintendent Councillor for Budget, Hon Yakub Raji, said that the 2018 Budget is a unique one as the legislators had to pass through rigorous processes in arriving at the total estimate.


According to him: “The chairman did not allow us to rest. We worked tirelessly on arriving at the final budget of the LG. He ensured that we covered the whole departments in the budget.” Speaking on what made the budget a unique one, the Chairman, Hon. Jelili said that the budget is the first of its kind in the whole of Lagos State.



“In 2017, we called for stakeholders meeting to hear from you. We gathered all the information given. We went for budget retreat and used the accumulated information to plan this budget. Normally, what happens is that when the legislators approve a budget, the executive continues to work with it but we decided to call you and present this to you.



We want you to give the budget executive endorsement because we believe that the people we are serving are the government. We are only representatives”. Stakeholders present at the occasion, spoke with New Telegraph on essence of the gathering.


The Oba of Shasha Kingdom, Oba Nasiru Lawal Ogunronbi, believed that the Chairman should be commended for the contents of the budget and the stakeholders meeting he organizes at intervals. He said: “The chairman has really done well.


If you go through the budget, you will see that the contents of the budget is different from what his predecessors include in their budget especially the idea of empowering primary school pupils. If that idea is executed successfully, it is going to go a long way in empowering the children”.



The Oba therefore called on the people of Alimosho Local Government to grant their full support to the LG chairman by paying their taxes because without revenue, there would be a limit to the execution of the plans included in the budget. Chief Edward Aderemi Obisesan, Alimosho LG APC chairman, stated that the Local Government chairman has done well and that he has been doing well since the beginning of his administration.


“All that he has been doing are things to improve the image of the local government. This year’s budget approval is the first of its kind in the whole of Lagos State. Never has this happened anywhere in this state.”


The chief thereafter urged the people to be patient with the chairman as a way of supporting him while bearing in mind that the programmes and policies of the Local Government means well for all the communities in the local government.



Also speaking, Chief Sola Ogunyombo, the CDC chairman of Alimosho LG said that the budget is a laudable budget because it focuses on infrastructure and human development. He averred that before the appraisal of the budget, the local government leaders called the CDA, CDC, artisans and all concerned to make their contributions which was incorporated into the budget.




Yet, the LG still called stakeholders together to assent the budget, which has never been done before. He maintained that it is a very commendable move which they all appreciate. He added that the next move by community leaders is to tell their people to contribute meaningfully towards the successful execution of the plans in the budget by encouraging the people to pay their taxes and all necessary levies, “Because if there is no income, it would be difficult to execute the budget”, he said.



“When they brought the budget to the house and we went through it, we discovered that it focuses on key areas, which is human and infrastructural development and since that is what we also wanted, we had to approve it but we want to beg the people to believe in our chairman and be patient.



He is a man that promises and fulfils”, the leader of the house, Hon. Ahmed Obadina said. Speaking on behalf of the entire youths of Alimosho Local Government on the level of their optimism concerning the budget, the President of the Youth council, Mr. Kolade Abdulrasheed, said: “Without any sentiments, the budget is indeed a unique one. It is the first of its kind.


This is the first time I would be seeing a program like this-the budget innovation, the budget process; it passed through the legislators, to the executive and now it is going to the populace before the final approval.


The normal thing that is usually done is for the budget to go to the legislature, it comes back to the executive for the final assent and implementation starts immediately, but this is a different thing and for me, it is the best”. He stated that the youths of Alimosho LG were highly optimistic of the success of the budget, considering the political will of the chairman.



“The chairman has the strength and the zeal to do it. Looking at the past budget, even though they started very late, they were able to achieve some things that we can see to show that this year’s budget would be a huge success”.



He said. Thereafter the group proceeded to the Akowonjo primary health centre already under construction and the Rauf Aregbesola Primary School, where the construction of a modern building is ongoing. Both are to be completed within six months.




Speaking on the new projects, Mrs. Lateefat Adebimpe, the head teacher of Rauf Aregbesola school expressed her gratitude to the chairman and strongly believed that the pupils would benefit a lot from the modern building the chairman has decided to construct for the school. Hon. Jelili emphasized the uniqueness of the budget, stating that as the name implies, the budget is direct and specific and that the budget answers both human and infrastructural challenges.


He however implored the people to pay their levies to the appropriate channels and ensure that they remain law abiding citizens.

Continue Reading

The Mega City / Life

Lagos reads riot act to butchers



As part of measures towards the actualization of the mega city status of Lagos state, the state government, its various agencies and parastatals have adopted the people oriented governance as priority thus endless stakeholders meetings and workshops are held at regular intervals.


This is done to sensitize the people on how collaborative efforts help to move the state forward. Few days ago, the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture organized a one-day workshop for Oko-Oba Agege butchers stakeholders on the theme, ‘Lagos state abattoir and lirage complex, Oko Oba: Current status and way forward’.


Speaking on the essence of the workshop, the Honourable Commissioner for Agriculture, Hon. Oluwatoyin Suarau stated that it became necessary to call all the stakeholders together following a report released in a national daily which revealed the filthiness and other unaccepted practices of the abattoir. He averred that the management of the abattoir is not encouraging and that a stop must come to it.


“We are here to brainstorm not witch hunt; to point out things we ought to do that we have not done and to imbibe what is right. In other countries, they bathe their animals before slaughtering but we do not do that here. We are ready to hear from everyone here.”


Highlighting the objectives of the gathering, the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr. Olayiwole Onasanya asserted that the workshop is aimed at ensuring that the Oko Oba Abattoir as the biggest abattoir in Nigeria is upgraded to a level that is of International Standards; to professionalize the abattoir by making sure that the professionals and the concessionaires that are supposed to be in the abattoir are the ones there and to ensure that the standard operative procedures for an abattoir is followed.



The stakeholders present spoke with New Telegraph on their cooperation with the government concerning the ongoing unacceptable practices in the abattoir.



Mr. Abdulganiyu Abdulmojeed, financial secretary of Eko refrigerated meat van said that the association is ready to cooperate with the government on the cleanup of the abattoir.



He said that the government has been assisting the union in ensuring that people make use of the refrigerated meat van but urged the government to do more by reading the riot acts to the people.



This, he believes would ensure the cooperation of the people with the Eko meat van association.



He said, “The essence of our own operation is that when they slaughter, we would take them to the market, but there are some hiccups here.


They’ve read the riot acts in the past and I know that’s what they’ll do today again and we are cooperating with the government on this one”. The chairman of Lagos state Butchers association, Alhaji Malomo Bakisu, stated that in the past, the state government had done a lot already.


According to him, the government set up a committee, the butchers travelled to Botswana and other countries to observe how meat processing was done there and that the stakeholders’ workshop is just a plus. He added that the union would agree with the government on this one.


He said, “What we would do now is to call all the butchers and let them know that what the government is doing is to add value to their business and ensure that meat processing is done in a hygienic way.” Alhaji Malomo stated that the association would discipline that any of the butchers who refuse to obey directives of the government.


He revealed that prior to this time, meat transportation was done with rickety vehicles and motorcycles but with the help of the Lagos state government, it was stopped “whatever policy government brings must be obeyed.



Now we are benefitting from our exports to Turkey, before now, they do not come to Nigeria for exportation because they say the way we process our meat is not hygienic but today it is. It is not government that is benefitting; it is we butchers that are benefitting”. Dr. Igbokwe, the Secretary General of the Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association, Lagos chapter believes that the work- shop is quintessential considering the ties of Animal health and human health.



He said, “there is so much connection between animal health and human health. Over 60 per cent of the diseases that affect human beings actually come from animals. We are insisting that the way our meat is being handled is not up to the standard of a mega city status that Lagos is pursuing and the little that needs to be done must be done now.”



On the part of veterinarians, he added that the butchers are being monitored but that, that is not enough because there are issues of human resources, budgetary limitations on the part of government but he believes that such issues are not to be treated as secondary or even tertiary.


“There is an issue of compensation where the butchers shy away from condemning animals that have tuberculosis. Nigeria today has the highest number of tuberculosis cases in the world. So, if you tell them to condemn such animals, you have to compensate them by law.



In some cases, the butchers become violet and butcher the veterinarian.” He appealed to media practitioners to help shine more light on medical issues because there are lots to be done In an interview with journalists, the Commissioner for Agriculture said that the ministry has been on the issue of the abattoir for a while.


He revealed that before he became the commissioner for the ministry the abattoir was not fenced and the governor who found it difficult to operate in such manner approved the fencing of abattoir and the cleanup of the refuse that was there.


“After that, we had a lot of meetings with them that if they want the abattoir to be upgraded to the standard of Botswana and Namibia, that people would come and patronize them and this would add value to the business they are doing and they all agreed.” He added that, all of a sudden, the people started reneging on the agreement and people outside started complaining about the activities going on in the abattoir.



“People even live in the Lirage and that place is meant for Animals not human beings but when we tell them, our people would not heed. We want abattoir to be upgraded to the standard of having the meat exported. In Africa today, Nigeria has animals more than any other African country. So we need to upgrade to a level that will require patronage.”



The commissioner revealed that the butchers would be given the ultimatum of three to four months to transform the abattoir into the acceptable standard and anyone who refuses to agree with government would have to leave or the abattoir would be shutdown.



“We have management in the abattoir, they are private companies. We would sign a contract with them today, in the next six months, they should have completed that” The permanent secretary said, “What I expect from the stakeholders is to adhere to what the government wants them to do.



We need to improve the slaughtering process, ensure that the abattoir is cleaner than before and devoid of miscreants and be of international standards.”

Continue Reading


Take advantage of our impressive online traffic; advertise your brands and products on this site. Call


For Advert Placement and Enquiries, Call:

Mobile Phone:+234 803 304 2915


Online Editor: Michael Abimboye

Mobile Phone: 0813 699 6757



Copyright © 2018 NewTelegraph Newspaper.

%d bloggers like this: