Liberia: Uypetdl Frowns On MCC's New Waste Management Strategy

Timothy Kpeh: "We have solutions to make Monrovia and Paynesville cities clean all the year round."

United for Peace, Education, Transparency and Development in Liberia (UYPETDL), a Civil Society Organization (CSO), has frowned on the new waste management initiative, which the Monrovia City Corporation recently launched.

According to UYPETDL executive director, Timothy Kpeh, the MCC's initiative, known as the "house-to-house garbage collection", is putting out of work more ordinary Liberians who were involved in the garbage collection business.

In an effort to re-brand its waste collection campaign, the MCC early last month launched a new waste management system pilot project, called the house-to-house garbage collection. The pilot project took effect in four districts in Monrovia.

Residents from District #7, District #8, District #9 and District #10 in Monsterrado County are being charged to pay some fees for the waste management team of MCC to dispose of their garbage. The initiative is under the auspices of the "Weah for Clean City" program.

Despite re-branding its waste collection campaign, MCC faces challenges with the handling of waste, but the corporation has intended to properly manage waste through the collaboration of the accredited Community-based Enterprises (CBEs), and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). It targets approximately 36,000 out of 85,000 homes enumerated throughout the 10 electoral districts in Monrovia.

This means all skid buckets at roadsides and in communities will eventually be removed, and only be maintained and monitored every 24 hours at market places.

But at a press conference on Tuesday, June 18, 2019 in Paynesville, Mr. Kpeh added, "this is not the right way to proceed with waste management in a city like Monrovia."

The UYPETDL, which recently concluded an assessment on solid waste management, recommended that it is not appropriate for MCC to directly get involved in the collection of refuse from all business structures. "This, we think, private entities should do," he said.

Kpeh said that the MCC instructed all CBEs and SMEs, community-based waste collection businesses that were involved in the house-to-house waste collection, not to collect fees from their customers as of May, 2019.

He said MCC has allegedly brought in some foreign companies, while stopping Liberian-owne businesses from freely operating under the MCC, a claim, MCC's communication department vehemently refuted.

"While we understand the challenges faced by the waste management sector, we strongly believe that government should muster the needed political will and opportunities for Liberians in the private sector to freely participate," Kpeh said.

Those SMEs and CBOs, according to him, are legally registered and paying taxes to national government and also empowering citizens.

"We will officially inform as of today, the WASH Commission, the Legislature through the WASH Caucus, the Liberia Business Association, GTbank and the Ministry of Commerce," Mr. Kpeh said.

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