Flood Disaster: Military to step in to clear Accra’s ‘unimaginable’ filth

Minister for Environment, Science and Technology Mahama Ayariga says the military have been called in to help rid areas in Accra of filth following severe flooding last Wednesday that has claimed about a 100 lives.

The 48 Engineering Regiment will partner waste management companies like ZoomLion to “clear the mess”, the minister revealed to Joy news Tuesday.

The Ministry, he said, had hoped that the monthly National Sanitation Day clean-up exercise held last Saturday would have rid the city of garbage.

But an evaluation of the effectiveness of the exercise done by the Local Government Ministry has found that filth has found its home in many areas.

The beaches is one of such places, he pointed out. The minister is convinced that short of a “cultural re-orientation”, Ghana’s sanitation challenges will persist.

A depressed resident at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, one of the areas worst hit by the flood complained that the area is “highly choked” by filth.

There is the lingering fears that an outbreak of cholera is not far off in view of an outbreak last year which claimed 150 lives.

Another resident said they were asked by authorities to dump rubbish by the street for collection.

The drains are still choked with too much sand and plastic materials are still trapped in gutters.

In reaction, Communications Manager of Zoomlion, Robert Coleman described the stretch of filth in many neighbourhoods such as Adabraka as “unimaginable”.

Zoomlions says although it has made available about 20 waste collection trucks in over 35 areas affected by the floods, heaps of garbage keep springing up.

He believes this is because survivors and displaced persons are still pulling out rubbish dumped by floods in their homes.

“We come and clear and they bring it back…people are sorting out their things”, Coleman noted.

While garbage collection exercise intensity, a cloudy weather hangs over Accra to signal a second round of severe rainfall cannot be written off.

This is Ghana’s rain season and many residents especially in low-lying areas live in constant fear of the worse.

Story by Ghana|myjoyonline.com|Edwin Appiah|[email protected]

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