24 January 2014

Nigeria: Lagos Highway Sweepers Lament Poor Pay

Lagos — Highway sweepers on Friday appealed to the Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) for protection from speeding vehicles that hit some of them while performing their duties and that they were poorly catered to.

They asked the management to provide them with adequate tools to make their work efficient and lives safe.

Some of them who spoke on condition of anonymity at Ojota, Ikorodu road and Tincan Island port roads claimed that they bought most of their tools and kits with their money.

One of the sweepers who gave her name as Bisi, said most of the kits she used was bought with her little money just to make sure she performed her duties.

"I buy some of my kits I use for work like the gloves which cost N100 to N250; I construct the brooms with the long stick for sweeping while I buy the nose mask for N100.

"It is not too encouraging for us with our N12,000 monthly salary to continue to buy tools; as we have families and children to cater for.

"All we request is for adequate and regular supply of the kits to enable us to work better."

The sweepers further complained of reckless driving by Lagosians and appealed that motorists on the highways should drive with caution to avoid hitting them.

A male sweeper told NAN that they always made the same complaints each time they went for meetings.

He also mentioned that some kind hearted Nigerians stopped by and donated money and some of the tools while they worked.

"Each time we attend our meetings at Alausa with LAWMA and the service providers, we continue to inform them of the poor provision of kits and tools.

" We implore LAWMA to ensure that those contractors who hire or employ us (sweepers) make adequate arrangement and provide working tools for us.

" They should not expect us to use our little money to buy things. We need boots, hand gloves, nose mask, hats or caps, and waste bins to put refuse generated on the highway," he said.

NAN reports that about 10,000 highway street sweepers are working with service providers in the state all under the supervision of LAWMA.

The highway maintenance started in 2006.

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