Desperate times call for desperate measures. The world at large is yet to recover fully from the vagaries of the novel Corona pandemic, talk less of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Leadership everywhere has been stretched to its elastic limits and our dear country, Ghana, has not been spared either.

The Ghanaian Cedi is struggling, fuel prices keep rising with its attendant high possibility of increases in commercial transport fares.

University Lecturers are always threatening to resort to industrial strike action and stay away from the lecture halls, CLOGSAG is demanding for neutrality allowance so that errr…somebody please school me on the neutrality business again.

Speaker Bagbin’s Parliament is boiling, E-Levy is crawling and Adwoa Safo is tick-toking. At this rate, very soon, even Dampare will lose steam and dismantle his team. Our unemployment numbers keep soaring to alarming proportions.

The system is tight for the ordinary citizen. Times are hard. There is never any loose coin or note left on the ground anymore. The only thing competing with unemployment in terms of numbers or volume is refuse/rubbish on the Ghanaian streets and gutters. There is rubbish everywhere, especially on the ground.

Most Ghanaians still live-in untidy surroundings, regrettably so. They throw rubbish around with reckless abandon. We spit and urinate, sometimes openly on any patch of grass that is lucky enough to survive the harmattan. 

Some living legends even spit gum into urinary basins with the misguided hope that the urine will dissolve the chewing gum. And yet, our President is determined to make Accra, Ghana’s capital, the cleanest city in Africa.

My Fellow Ghanaians, that right there is the problem of the Day.

The harsh economic condition is a huge disincentive to the ordinary Ghanaian in waste disposal. Money to dispose off refuse is competing with money to buy koko and kose for the home. I need not tell you where the balance of power will shift.

There are competing needs for limited resources and money to dispose off refuse is not top on the priority list for most people, unfortunately.

I propose, therefore, that, instead of paying money that is not there anyway, to dispose-off refuse, government, working through a private entity, take the refuse from Ghanaian homes at no cost to the citizenry but rather, pay people money in exchange for their refuse. Yes! I’m advocating for cash for rubbish. The benefits far out-strip the challenges, if any.

Immediately after this policy is sanctioned, the following will happen automatically:

  1. No right-thinking Ghanaian will knowingly throw refuse on the streets again, not even in a pitch-black neighborhood,
  2. No refuse truck or makeshift refuse truck (Aboboyaa) will dump refuse on the motorway or any unapproved field again,
  3. Every Ghanaian citizen and residents in Ghana will benefit directly from these monies as all homes produce varying volumes of refuse,
  4. Segregated refuse will fetch an individual more money than unsegregated refuse,
  5. Hundreds of people will descend into our gutters to desilt them and collect the money (refuse) choking the drains,
  6. Save a few more lives even as the rains intensifies,
  7. An increase in the appetite to spend, especially on consumables (kitchen) thus increasing liquidity in the system,
  8. Will reduce the workload of Zoomlion and all the other lions thereby making the works much more effective,
  9. Will reduce petty theft (except for theft of refuse) and improve the overall security as all Ghanaian homes will benefit from this policy,
  10. Unemployment numbers will wither,
  11. No political activist, NPP or NDC can speak against this policy openly,
  12. Ultimately make Accra and Ghana, a much cleaner city and country than it is today.

I leave the perennial pessimist and “cannot be done-ist” to ask the easy questions of where can you find the money to do this?

May God bless our homeland Ghana and make her great and strong.