The La Dade-Kotopon Municipal Assembly(LaDMA) in collaboration with the Green Africa Youth Organization(GAYO), a climate advocacy group, have organized a consultative meeting aimed at implementing the ‘Zero Waste Accra Project’.

The project which is in line with President Akufo-Addo’s quest to see Accra becoming the cleanest city on the continent when fully operational will significantly decrease the amount of solid waste produced in the municipality.

Municipal Coordinator for LADMA, Mr Daniel Nkrumah who spoke to the media about the partnership lauded the initiative by GAYO and highlighted the impact that the project will have on LaDMA considering how challenging it has been for the Municipal authority to keep sanitization in check due to logistical and human resource challenges.

Mr. Nkrumah said the project will not only see to the realization of a clean and healthy Municipality but also create employment opportunities for persons within the area.

“When we talk of zero waste, it means the waste we generate from our houses, workplaces and all other places should be considered as a resource.

“So from the moment the waste is generated, we will treat it as a very important resource through to the processes and to the end where we make profit out of it.

“By doing that we create jobs for the people who get money while we continue to solve a major problem which is sanitization”, Mr Nkrumah told the press.

Miss Betty Osei Bonsu, Project Coordinator for GAYO who addressed the stakeholders said the ‘Zero Waste Project’ will contribute diversely to the municipality and country at large.

She said another goal of the project is also to educate the public to see solid waste as a resource which will intend drive economic growth through employment.

“It is a project directed at waste management. Looking around us, our whole environment including our beaches are all polluted.

“This project will contribute in several ways one of which is elimination of waste because ones communities and waste collectors realise the value of solid waste, they will be tempted to store more waste which they will send to places where they can be recovered and in turn receive money,” she said.

She added that the project will see to the realization of a clean municipality which will be extended to other parts of the country over time.

“This project is going to give us space because we are running out of space for landfills and dump sites. It will also ensure that the little space that is left would be used to carry out major developmental projects”, Miss Osei Bonsu indicated.

Media’s contribution

Miss Osei Bonsu called on the media to use their platforms to create awareness about the ‘Zero Waste Project’.

She also urged the media to be involved in discussions and decisions about sanitation

“The media’s contribution to all this is to create awareness and the needed awareness. It’s time for the media to become inclusive when it comes to decision making and not only reporting on what has been presented.

“The media must come together collaboratively and say this is what we think can be done, these are the lapses and gaps in the media that has to be bridged to get message across”, she stated.

GAYO also donated a motorbike to the assembly to assist in sanitation activities.

Background

Following an initial agreement between the La Dade-Kotopon Municipal Assembly (LaDMA) and Green Africa Youth Organization (GAYO) to work together to develop a Zero Waste Strategy for LaDMA, a first meeting was held for informal waste pickers and collectors to discuss their contribution to the Zero Waste project.

During the first consultative meeting with the informal waste pickers and collectors, the Municipal Environmental Health Officer (MEHO) for LaDMA said municipal solid waste (MSW) in La is presently managed in an unsustainable manner due to uncontrolled urban growth.

Large quantities of waste is generated daily in the municipality which exerts pressure on an over-strained solid waste management system.

Coupled with weak institutional capacity and lack of resources (human and capital), the LaDMA faces difficulties in ensuring that all the waste generated in the municipality is collected, segregated and transported to the final disposal site.

One other major underlying challenge is the lack of capacity to enforce bye-laws on waste management.

This second consultative meeting was held with diverse stakeholders including Assembly members, market women, waste management services providers, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), civil society organizations (CSOs), churches, fisher folks, educators and school authorities, and real estate and property developers to deliberate on the contributions of all the stakeholders towards realising the ‘Zero Waste Project’ in the municipality.

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