Agbobloshie residents rile at govt for poor sanitation oversight

Despite government’s intervention on Monday to clear a mountain of garbage after more than two months of neglect, residents of Agbogbloshie have riled at the poor oversight by authorities on sanitation in the area.

The residents also say a “massive cleanup” exercise, spearheaded by the Local Government Ministry and the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA), came a bit too late.

Following cholera outbreak in parts of Accra since last month, the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr Julius Debrah, on Monday August 4, 2014, begun a cleanup campaign in selected communities in Accra – Agbogbloshie, Abossey-Okai and Kokomemle.

The exercise was done in the evening, after market women have ended trading.

The Minister admitted that, “the closure of the only landfill site in Accra a couple of months ago led to the indiscriminate dumping of waste, coupled with recent  rainfalls created ideal conditions for the spread of cholera.”

However, Mr. Debrah said with the creation of two more landfill sites at locations close to areas where a lot of waste is generated, he is hopeful transportation of waste to the landfill sites would be facilitated, thereby reducing instances of refuse heaps in communities.

The Vice President who was at Monday’s clean up exercise at Abogloshie to “observe the accumulation of waste in the area” also announced a “crash programme by government to immediately remove refuse heaps in Accra and allow the city to manage on a daily basis, the filth that is collected especially in the markets”.

The Mayor of Accra, Alfred Okoe Vanderpuje was optimistic heaps of refuse in the Agbobloshie will be a thing of past.

According to him, pressure on the Kpone landfill site is set to reduce as the newly commissioned Nsumia Waste Disposal facility begins operations.

He explained that the new site, which has been engineered to contain refuse for the next two years, will replace the closed Pantang landfill site. The other project according the AMA boss is the SONITRA facility.