Zimbabwe: Garbage crisis in Harare lingers as city hints at climate-smart waste management methods
Harare city’s garbage problems continue to persist with several suburbs of the capital plagued by illegal dumping which could potentially lead to an outbreak of waterborne diseases such as typhoid and cholera, following the recent heavy rains.
The municipality has since hinted at climate-friendly and sustainable waste management methods in light of the ongoing environmental damage.
The council allegedly failed to collect rubbish in suburbs such as Mufakose, Warren Park, Warren Park D, Kuwadzana and White Cliff, to name a few, resulting in piles of rubbish in some open spaces .
CBD has also not been spared the influx of vendors dumping waste anywhere and anyhow.
Acting Harare City Spokesperson Innocent Ruwende said they were looking at sustainable waste management methods while admitting to facing challenges due to the exhaustion of the refuse collection fleet.
He said the new strategic methods of garbage collection focused on preventing and reducing waste at the production, packaging and consumption stages of the chain.
“We are moving away from traditional waste management systems which consist of a simple process whereby we collect and transport waste and dispose of it at selected waste disposal sites, this approach to collecting, transporting and disposing of waste is not financially and environmentally sustainable as well as it is expensive.
“Many cities and towns, especially in high-income countries, have since abandoned this model and moved to a more efficient integrated solid waste management model. This is where we are going as a city.
“The model includes a set of waste treatment methods and strategies whose main objective is to prevent or reduce as much as possible the generation of solid waste, to divert as much waste as possible from landfill and to ‘improve the efficiency of solid waste management,’” Ruwende said.
“Currently our garbage collection fleet is hovering around 21 against a requirement of 50.
Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA) program manager Rueben Akili, however, lambasted for not prioritizing service delivery.
“The continued non-collection of rubbish by the city of Harare emanates from the lack of prioritization of service delivery.
“We have a local authority that spends on football at the expense of providing services. As CHRA we maintain our position that action must be taken to recover 15 waste compactors purchased in 2016 but so far , these trucks have not been delivered.
“The non-collection of rubbish is a serious management problem which should be solved in our local authority. The continuous piling of rubbish and the emergency of illegal dumping pose a serious threat to health, especially in areas with high density where many people reside,” Akili noted. .