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Pains, Gains of Waste Disposal Business in Lagos

Posted: Jul 17, 2015 at 4:51 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Emmanuel Udom  –  Lagos 


Joel Babalola, proprietor, Click One Business Center at 194, Ipaja road, Agege, Lagos, is not a happy man. Not that any calamity has befallen him. Far from it, but he is not pleased with the manner some wastes disposal operators are going about their businesses in the state.

The state agency charged with regulating the business is the Lagos State Waste Management Agency (LAWMA).

Oduduwa’s investigations showed that about 350 operators have been granted the nod to evacuate the waste generated by the residents at a fee, depending on the area.

For instance residents of Oregun, people living in flats pay between N1, 000 and N2, 500 every month. A resident of Kudirat Abiola Way said that the irony is that the wastes disposal operators do not come on time.

Babalola said he does not get value for his money. Every month he parts with N250 for the Private Sector Participants (PSP), to clear the wastes generated by his business centre. But the PSP does not keep to its own part of the deal. “They do not come regularly,” he said.

According to him, people who live in flats at the premises also pay N500 monthly and yet, the service is not commensurate with the money paid, “thereby forcing some of us to resort to using cart pushers for wastes disposal”.   To most residents, it is different strokes for different folks.

But, Mama Segun, a trader at No 3, Unity road, Oke-Odo, Abule Egba, Lagos differs with Babalola.  As far as she is concerned, waste disposal trucks, run by Wotlee & Sons Enterprises, come every Thursday to collect wastes in her area.

She explained that every person living in a one room apartment pays N300 each month for wastes disposal. Therefore, with 32 rooms in her resident, a total of N9, 600 is paid every month to LAWMA-PSP wastes disposal operators.

To Dr (Mrs) Grace Achum, Editor-In-Chief, Business Plus Magazine, the LAWMA-PSP operators servicing Ladipo Estate in Oshodi, Lagos, are regular in coming to collect wastes in the estate.

Her words: N1500 is charged by the LAWMA-PSP operators for each flat in the estate and their services have been efficient.

Raheem Ibrahim, Lagos Bureau-Chief, The Nigerian Observer newspaper is yet another person that is not happy with wastes disposal operations around Nnamdi Azikiwe Street and its environs on Lagos Island.

Ibrahim lamented that each month, most residents pay N100 to wastes disposal operators and still they do not come regularly.

Regrettably, some LAWMA-PSP trucks have stopped coming to the street to collect wastes, which forced some residents to go back to dumping their wastes in the night at the Nnamdi Azikiwe junction, where the LAWMA trucks would come around to collect the wastes.

However, while people living in one room apartment around high density areas like: Agege, Iju, Surulere, Iyana Ipaja, Alagbado, Abule Egba, Oko Oba, Akowonjo and Lagos Island, among others pay fewer amounts to LAWMA-PSP operators, more wastes are however generated by residents of these areas.

People living in these high density areas pay from N100 to N1500 each month to domestic operators, even as high volumes of wastes were being dumped in gutters and canals in these areas.

Observations showed that eateries, hotels,  hospitals, fuel stations, recreational centers , markets  and other public places , which LAWMA says, fall under industrial wastes category pay more, even as they also generate more wastes.

A source at Sweet Sensation on Allen Avenue, in Ikeja, Lagos, who spoke off records, say that the eateries do spend close to a N100, 000 or more on wastes disposal every month.

Speaking on the challenges facing wastes disposal business in Lagos, Monsuru Abdullahi, manager of Wotlee & Sons Enterprises, lamented that non-payment of wastes bills by most Lagosians as the major headache of LAWMA-PSP operators.

His words: Wotlee area of operations begins from U-Turn up to Super bus-stop area in Abule-Egba, including the Lagos-Ibadan expressway. These areas have more than 350 Streets, which must be served.

He lamented that his company is being owed N10million debt by residents of the area, even as he further said the rainy season also slow down off loading of wastes at the Igando dumpsites, located along LASU-Igando road in Lagos.

When our correspondent visited Ojora headquarters of LAWMA to speak with Ola Oresanya, Managing Director of the agency, he was said not to be on seat. He did not also reply to an email sent to him.

However, a source at LAWMA told our correspondent off records that the waste disposal regulatory agency does not spare any private company involved in the LAWMA-PSP project.

In the last one year, quite a number of erring wastes disposal companies were either warned or sanctioned, depending on  the gravity of their default, our source said.