As Operation WID crumbles…


Citizens demand revival of cleaning Saturday

October 24, 2016 By Emmanuel Okyne (Intern)

Residents of Freetown municipality have called on the Freetown City Council to revive the abandoned Saturday cleaning exercise, following the apparent failure of Operation Waste management Indiscipline and Decongestion (WID).

A regular cleaning Saturday was introduced by the National Provisional Ruling Council (NPRC) junta in 1992 when they took power from a civilian government. The exercise was implemented every last Saturday in a calendar month and it was very much effective in keeping cities and towns across the country clean. The exercise is still being implemented in Bo, Pujehun and lately in Makeni, while Freetown continues to swim in absolute filth.

Memunatu Bangura, a petty trader at Congo Market, Brookfields, in the west end of Freetown, echoed the cliché that ‘cleanliness is next to Godliness,’ noting that the revival of the abandoned regular  cleaning  Saturday could help improve the poor sanitary condition of the city.

She said the market area has been infested by cockroaches and rats that have rendered the environment pretty much unhygienic for the upkeep of consumable items.
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She said although they usually clean up the environment after their daily sales, the Freetown City Council should ensure proper hygiene in the market area to prevent the outbreak of diseases.

Grandma Beatrice Cole, also from the Brookfields community, told Concord Times that during the colonial era, the Freetown municipality used to be cleaned, unlike its present status, stating that government should re-visit the mode of cleaning the city in a bid to protecting residents from contracting malaria and other dangerous diseases.

She noted that a revival of the regular cleaning Saturday would help salvage congestion in hospitals, adding that people die of preventable diseases because they fail to properly upkeep their environments.

“Some parents are in the habit of giving garbage to their children who irresponsibly dump it at various dustbins. In most cases, the children would just take a stroll and throw the garbage at the next neighbour’s premises or on the foot path,” she said.

She called on the Freetown City Council to institute bye laws that would levy fines on parents found culpable of using their children to dump garbage in prohibited bareas.

A shop owner at the Sani Abacha Street, Alice Kamara, told Concord Times that most of the drainages in the central business district emit offensive odour, thus appealing to the Freetown City Council to collaborate with the Sierra Leone Roads Authority to clear the said rubbish from the drainages.

“All the drainages are stuffed with plastic elements produce by water companies. The said companies should find a way to recycle their used plastics as it is making the streets to become eyesore,” she said.