By Sharon Mautsi and Idris Chaibu
The absence of bins or trash cans is contributing largely to the illegal garbage dump sites in the Central Business District of the City of Bulawayo. The dumpsites have become permanent around the market area particularly by; Corner 5th Ave & J. Moyo St and along Lobengula street close to OK Supermarket.
Bulawayo City Council cleaners clear up the dump sites on a daily basis in the morning, but by midday, the illegal dumpsites are resuscitated and the greatest contributors are the street vendors.
The Bulawayo City Council has in the past mentioned that it had no fuel for garbage collection and that explains why they send cleaners with small trolleys to try and clear up the garbage dump sites and clean the streets of the city every morning.
However, it would be a cleaner city if there were more refuse bins or trash cans made available in public spaces and if the refuse collection was regularised by the local authority as per their mandate and since it is the best way that the taxpayers’ money can be utilized for the provision of basic services.
In addition, the local authority must put in place measures to punish offenders who litter in public spaces so as to uphold the standard of cleanliness in the City of Bulawayo.
Meanwhile, poor waste management has caused the fast-growing township of Cowdray Park in Bulawayo to be overshadowed by a sheet of smoke emanating from burning recyclable materials by the local authority. Residents have expressed great concern over the smoke which is causing great discomfort from the polluted air. It is alarming that this is happening at a time where the effects of climate change have become a global pandemic. If only cities could grade their waste and recycle it.