• Joho said private garbage collectors dispose of garbage irresponsibly making the city an eyesore.
• He gave them a two-month ultimatum to get licenses and identifications from the county government.
Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho has blamed private garbage collectors for the filth in the coastal city.
He said they dispose of garbage irresponsibly, making the city an eyesore. "Eventually, the county is blamed for the garbage."
He spoke on Wednesday while flagging off 10 new garbage trucks at the Treasury Square outside the Mombasa county assembly. "That must be put to a stop! We will form a law, my friend. This assembly will make a law such that when you do such a thing, we will auction your vehicle," Joho said.
He gave them two months to get licences and identifications from the county government or they lose their jobs. Joho said private collectors are the reason there are heaps of garbage in nondesignated places.
Residents of V.O.K and Nyali MP Mohammed Ali had protested the existence of an ‘illegal’ dumpsite in their neighbourhood. County garbage trucks are always seen dumping waste in the area. Officials say the site is a holding area. But Ali and residents say it is a health hazard.
Joho said residents are also to blame. He said they take 80 per cent of the garbage responsibility because they are the generators.
“You are the first ones to throw away garbage irresponsibly and you become the first to take it to social media and call the radio that the city is dirty. Has it made itself dirty?" he asked.
Joho said garbage collection has reduced from 52 per cent last year to 46 per cent. He warned against the irresponsible use of the trucks. The county government is on a mission to increase the percentage of garbage collection by providing more than 10 trucks every year to achieve 100 per cent collection by 2022.
The new trucks can carry 15 tonnes each. They are expected to ferry 200 tonnes per day. The first consignment of the trucks increased collection from 20 per cent in 2017 to 52 per cent in 2018. This year, however, it has reduced to 46 per cent.
Environment executive Godfrey Nato blamed the reduction on the poor state of the road leading to the Mwakirunge dumpsite, Mombasa’s main waste disposal site. "We understand that the road is under the national government so while you are in talks with the president, mention the road," he told Joho.
He said trucks wear fast because of dilapidated roads, making frequent repair costly. "The amount of money we spend to repair the trucks has gone up. We will be happy if that road is given priority by the national government," the executive said.
(Edited by F'Orieny)