Ndey Siren Bakurin said although waste management is a common problem in The Gambia, the government is intensifying its efforts towards addressing the situation.
She made these remarks during the presentation of assorted cleansing materials donated by the NEA to the Governor’s office and the NEA’s regional office in Kerewan, North Bank Region.
She told the gathering: “Waste of plastic origins and other biodegradable materials are becoming more prominent in The Gambia in recent years. Improperly managed solid waste poses a risk to human health and the environment. Uncontrolled dumping and improper waste handling cause a variety of problems, including contaminating water, attracting insects and rodents, and increasing flooding due to blocked drainage canals or gullies.
“The effects of inadequate waste management continue to affect not only habitants of the Greater Banjul Area but the effects are now becoming apparent in our growth centers including Farafenni, Barra and Essau in NBR.”
The environment watchdog boss however said that the mounting waste problem was what prompted the government of The Gambia to come up with the monthly nationwide cleansing exercise as well as the anti-littering regulation.
Ms Bakurin added: “The donation of these cleansing equipment is in response to the clarion call of the president to support the implementation of the monthly Operation Clean the Nation. Environment being the driving force for any socio-economic development of any region or country, the provision of these cleansing materials to the our regional stakeholders would help boost the morale of the monthly cleansing activity. As part of activities to improve waste management in the country, a nationwide mapping of waste dumpsites was done this year covering 96 dumpsites throughout the country that are identified to have potential to cause high or severe flood with 70% of all dumpsites visited are situated in wetlands, drainages, gullies, gutters, depression and water ways posing high potential environmental risks.”
The NEA announced that starting from the month of October 2014, operation clean the nation would now be observed twice in every month – second and fourth Saturdays – as dictated by the executive directive.
“We need to adopt more environmentally friendly life styles in an effort to reduce, re-use and recycle waste as a first step towards waste management,” she noted.
In receiving the items, the governor of NBR, Lamin Queen Jammeh, applauded the NEA for what he described as a benevolent gesture that will go a long way in their efforts to keep their environment clean.
Governor Jammeh called on the citizenry of NBR to utilise the donated materials judiciously and for the purposes they are meant.
Lamin Ceesay, Chairman of Kerewan Area Council called on the people of NBR to take ownership of their environment and never wait to be told to clean their surroundings. “As NEA brought these cleaning materials to our door steps, this is one of the greatest motivations one can offer support to regional government establishments in the maintenance of our dear environment,” he added.]]>