20 October 2017

Cameroon: Refuge Disposal - Waste Accumulates Again

Keeping Douala clean necessitates the contribution of environmental service providers, creates jobs and promotes the private sector.

Douala is a city with serious environmental challenges in the country. Its low-lying landscape, the abundance of surface water, a not-so-good drainage system and its history of residents throwing dirt anywhere they deem fit without recourse of the negative impact reflect the daily lives of residents. In spite of various efforts by city authorities, environment service providers and the private sector waste continues to accumulate in the economic capital exponentially. It is now a couple of weeks that some neighbourhoods of Douala are not only dirty but stink as well, a major cause of which has been attributed to attitudes. On a daily basis residents are seen in broad daylight throwing sachets of water, containers of mineral water, plastic bags and organic kitchen waste just anywhere along street corners, beside homes and into gutters. When asked, a Ngangue woman said "The garbage can we have around us is full and it has been so over two weeks ago when the hygiene and sanitation company last emptied it; even the other two garbage cans found a little further from us are full and overflowing to pollute the surroundings and we don't know where to dispose of dirt now." The cry for a proper daily collection of waste is not high in Ngangue but also many other neighbourhoods. In some neighbourhoods the need is such that collection has to double, that is, collection should be done in the morning and evening of every day. The lone company which is doing a lot to pick up, transport and properly dispose the city's dirt, HYSACAM, is, indeed, still challenged to double its logistic and human resource capacities as more waste is now being produced in the city with a steady rise in population due to movements from the rural areas to the city.

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