KATIMA MULILO - The new temporary dumpsite being used by the Katima Mulilo Town Council (KMTC) has raised eyebrows at the north eastern town, with many residents considering it a health hazard due to its proximity to residential areas and its lack of an environmental clearance certificate.
The dumpsite is being used illegally by the town council as they are yet to receive an environmental clearance certificate from the environment ministry.
A source from the environment ministry said although the town council applied for a clearance certificate, no approval has been granted, as a result council is vulnerable to law suits.
“They initially asked for an extension to use the old dumpsite, but their request was rejected and they were requested to submit a scoping report for a temporary site, but they did not follow the right procedures, it appears some people don’t take things seriously… Any dumpsite has to be cleared before use,” said the source.
The source suggested the site could be suitable for temporary use if there were proper controls.
“The dumpsite is about 500 metres from the road, so it is an acceptable distance, but the problem is that the site is not fenced, and there is no one at the site to monitor the situation to ensure that people are not just dumping anyhow, instead of them dumping going further, they are dumping closer and closer to the road side,” stated the source.
On a positive note the Katima Mulilo Town Council resumed collecting refuse last month. They have thus far vowed to credit customers for the months they did not collect the refuse, and they are reportedly set to lose N$2.3 million.
Contacted for comment, the Katima CEO Raphael Liswaniso stated that council has no option but to dump at the current site. “We don’t have anywhere to go, and we cannot leave the rubbish in town, we need to find an alternative. We have a plan in motion to find an alternative pit but it is in Liselo area. We need to request them, we can only use the site if they agree. Currently there is no such agreement,” said Liswaniso.
Asked about the lack of proper control at the site, Liswaniso stated there are “security guards at the site, and people know exactly where they are supposed to dump. Some people just dump where they should not, do they really need to be educated about that?’’ questioned Liswaniso.
“We are not going to afford to waste council funds to put security guards everywhere. People should be responsible, it is their country, and when the calamity comes it doesn’t just come to the council, it comes to everybody, so all of us need to be responsible,” he said.
Liswaniso further explained some people were dumping closer to the road, because their vehicles were reportedly getting stuck in the sand, but that is no longer the case, as council has put a plan in motion to construct a proper road going to the site. He added that apart from putting security guards on site, council has started moving the rubbish which was dumped closer to the road to the actual site.
2019-02-07 10:00:14 | 10 months ago