By Esnath Kalawe
As part of ensuring hygiene in the Lilongwe City council, last Wednesday, Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Dr Ben Phiri had given authorities a deadline to improve sanitation services after observing filthy and unhealthy conditions in some centres.
Among his programs the Minister visited fire service offices, Kauma waste management centre, Bwandiro market, Tsoka and Lilongwe main market.
However,he was quick to note that he was not satisfied with some ablution centres(Toilets and urinating facilities in places like Fire service department and Tsoka market which he described as very detrimental hence needed urgent action.
Dr Phiri cautioned the city council officers for not taking care of the sanitation places saying it is unacceptable hence urging them to be accountable.
“I was not impressed with some sectors and I have given deadlines as you are aware that as government we don’t operate on a blank cheque but we give each other deadlines.
“We have been assured that within seven to 14 days they should improve the services through the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and his team,” he said.
According to the Minister his desires are to improve the health services so that they should be in line with their plans in the Ministry which is to transform Lilongwe city,among others.
He added that government is mandated to promoting sanitation noting that the issue of vendors selling goods along the street will soon be tackled so that they go back to their respective places.
“My Ministry is geared to removing the vendors from the streets and get them back to their rightful places,” Phiri said.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Lilongwe City Council, John Chome was very grateful for the minister’s visit to appreciate the efforts authorities were making to make it clean and the challenges they were facing.
“We have explained to him our plans to make the city look clean and we can see the future looks bright for us to accomplish our goal,” said Chome.
Chome admitted that the issue of waste management in the city was a critical one hence the need to increase the fleet of refuse carriers so that they should be able to service the markets and public places as well as
residential areas efficiently.
“We have guaranteed the Minister to take action in the stipulated time frame to make sure that what we do should be sustainable,” he said.
In the meantime the Lilongwe City Council uses two skip carriers to cater for 38 market centres in removing waste to dump site.-MANA