Monrovia — The Liberian government has announced a compulsory cleanliness exercise across Monrovia and surrounding cities ahead of 2018 July 26 independence celebrations.
The compulsory cleanliness will be enforced by a task force expected to be set up by a joint steering committee and will operate under the caption, "Weah for Clean City Special Presidential Taskforce."
The steering committee includes General Services Agency, Paynesville City Corporation, Monrovia City Corporation and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Others are the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of state.
The Monrovia City Corporation will head the steering committee with a mandate to ensure that homes and public places including markets and cemeteries are given a facelift.
Speaking Tuesday during a press conference in Monrovia, Mayor Jefferson Koji noted that it has been observed that most homes and surroundings are filthy but the cleanliness exercise will help address the situation.
"This exercise is intended to provide safety and healthy environment for all, especially our young children who are in school and are eager to celebrate these kinds of occasions," Koijee said.
While he claims that the process is important to create good breathing atmosphere, Koji noted that it will also provide approximately 1,000 short-term jobs for young people.
These young people, according to him, will implement the task force mandate of cleaning various streets and other areas and carried out inspections in various communities and homes.
He named Goba-Chop Market, Red Light Market, Pipeline Communities, Bushrod Island as well as Paynesville are key areas that the exercise will place a focus on.
If they perform well, Koji noted that these young people forming part of the exercise might have the opportunity to continue working, since the cleaning up exercise is not only limited to the independence celebration but might be a continuous process.
Young people recruitment for the cleaning up campaign will be compensated US$50 across the board.
The steering committee has also welcomed voluntary services from individuals wanting to form part of the exercise but clarified that they would not be included in the compensation.
Koji announced that the exercise begins effectively Tuesday, July 3, 2018 with the commercial district of Red Light and other areas in Paynesville City targeted for the collection of stockpile of garbage between 9 pm to 4 Am.
At the same time, GSA Director General Mary Broh is expected to head the technical aspect of the task force and to ensure its effectiveness.
Madam Broh stated during the press conference that the participation of young people in the exercise will create environmental sustainability, but cautioned them to do the exercise with passion.
She wants the youths who are to form part of the exercise to gear up, noting that the work will be intensive.
"The work will be carried out until 4 Am daily and those who will be caught placing dirt on the street or within city limits will be fine in line with the city ordinance," Broh said.
The GSA Director further indicated that the exercise will place emphasis on primary and secondary waste collections.
She encouraged communities to take ownership of the campaign by ensuring that all private homes are painted before July 20th and that those without toilets will be fine.
At the same time, Madam Broh has informed the public that the EPA will begin inspection at various homes to curb the burying or burning of dirt.