By Lanre Adesanya
Hon. Adele Elijah Owolabi, the Executive Chairman Apapa Local Government has kick-started a new initiative to ward-off indiscriminate waste disposal within Apapa and environs by officially launching “Keep Apapa Clean and Healthy, A Must (KACHAM) Corps, describing the scheme as a clear cut attempt to ensure healthy environment and people.
Adele said that a tidy Apapa is important to aid attraction of investors, this according to him informs why the need to domesticate the Cleaner Lagos Initiative by the coinage KACHAM, to make Apapa comely for investors who access the council through the two seaports situated there.
He however called for the cooperation of community people. Adele established the KACHAM CORPS to enforce the cleanliness culture, along with 25 units of “Branded Waste Bins” to be placed in different strategic points, as well as the “Cleaner Apapa Squad” (CAS).
Adele said that KACHAM will mount 24/27 surveillance all around the area to ensure compliance, stating that the corps will operate both day and night shift to ensure tidiness of the environment, owing to the busy night-life in Apapa.
In his words, “This is one of my eleven cardinal points for the the environment, once environment is clean it can give room for business activities to thrive and my feasibility study revealed that Apapa is a peculiar place there are businesses that thrive in the night time, tankers and haulages that come into Apapa at night and the indomie sellers who sell till 2am in the night.”
“We now say that have to address the situation,the Governor gave us standing order after we were sworn-in to clean Apapa axis and since 31st of July we have embarked on that, but immediately we clean,the next morning the dirts are back on the road.”
“I spoke with the maintenance department to fabricate the branded waste bin and our sweepers will be moving day and night to clean the area. The people should dispose their trash in the waste bins,” Adele said.
Hon. Mojisola Lawal Miranda, member of the Lagos State House of Assembly representing Apapa 1 constituency said, “We need a clean environment so that can be free from sicknesses, diseases and epidemics, moreover this time that we have LASSA fever resurgence in town, it very important that we clean our environment and not only that, we clean and cart away,which I think should our ,major preoccupation,we shouldn’t let the government remind us of the importance of cleanliness in our environment.
Hon. Ayodeji Joseph, Member Federal House of Representatives representing Apapa Federal Constituency commends the initiative,counseling people to maximize the opportunity.
“When you initiative such projects that means you don’t more people to go to your hospital because a healthy nation is a wealthy nation same implies for Apapa,it is a very commendable initiative by the chairman of Apapa local government.
“It is not sane to get to this level where we dispose refuse indiscriminately we need to sensitize our people about the implication of all this,so my advice to our people is they should make use of all the bins that will be put in strategic places and the local government should not allow the a waste to overflow the bins before carting them away.
“I was chairman of this local government for six years and I know the pains of the people,one waste management,that was my first advice to the chairman is that immediately you become the chairman you need to clean Apapa, he has done that now, the next is traffic congestion,he alone can’t do that,it should involve the local government, state and the federal government all of us should come together to ease the burden of traffic,it is just too much for our people.
“The major road is being fixed now,so I will advise the local government to do much about the inner roads where they should do their best in trying to fix.
Commenting on abandoned structures dotting Apapa, the lawmaker maintained that the council can do but nothing, noting that only the state can address the situation.
“I advise the local government to write state government to come and intervene,because the local government cannot do much on the abandoned structures,of course the state can take them over for government use.
Head of Department of Environmental Services, Apapa Local Government, Sanitarian Akingbehin Samuel,commented on the importance of the initiative,citing cleanliness as a leeway for enhancing health status of the populace.
“KACHAM corp are placed directly under the environmental services department as foot soldiers, they go and see what is happening outside, bring information and complaints back home and environmental department takes over from there and where there are recalcitrant members of the public, who after been served the notice refused to abate the nuisances, we will use this same KACHAM corps to carry out enforcement and bring them before the court, where the long arm of the law catch up with them.
“LASSA fever actually affected some people right now and the local government in beefing up the preventive aspect is to intensify house to house inspection,we will be doing these to avoid situations capable of encouraging breeding of mastomysnatalensis, vector of the disease to man borne by rodents attracted by refuse and waste indiscriminately disposed.
Photo credit: Aina Temitope