The Akwa Ibom State Government has given a marching order to all relevant agencies to evacuate the Uyo road refuse dumps within 48 hours, to enhance the free flow of traffic.
The secretary to the state government, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem, announced this on Monday when he undertook an inspection of the dump site located a few metres from the Government House in Uyo.
Ekuwem, who was accompanied by officials of relevant agencies, said an “asphalt in-road should be created to enable trucks to drive about 50 metres from the road into the ravine where the refuse will be dumped to stop the damaging effect of roadside dumping of refuse” as part of remedial measures toward clearing up the menace of the dump site.
He directed the Commissioner for Works, Professor Eno Ibanga, and the Managing Director of Hensek Integrated Services, Uwem Okoko, to work out the engineering content of the remedial work plan for the Uyo Village Road within 48 hours.
While acknowledging that the waste could be converted into needed energy and power for consumption, the SSG called on the commissioner for Power, Dr. John Etim to initiate plans for the recycling of the waste into a veritable source of energy for the state.
In his remarks, the chairman of the Akwa Ibom State Environmental Protection and Waste Management Agency, Prince Akpan Ikim said it was expedient for the government to undertake the tour to appraise the menace of the dump site and seek both short and long-term measures towards ameliorating the menace.
According to him, with the cosmopolitan nature of Uyo city, over 18,000 tons of waste is generated per day for dumping at the Uyo Village Road dump site, adding “there was an urgent need for a new sanitary dump site outside the state capital with a conveyor belt that will recycle the waste while also providing a more convenient and conducive environment with good accessible road for the dumping of refuse.”
Ikim expressed appreciation to the state government for deeming it necessary to undertake the tour of the Uyo Village Road refuse dump site with relevant government officials and expressed satisfaction with the remedial measures taken to evacuate the dump from the road.
He disclosed that the State Environmental Protection Bill had already passed the first and second hearing on the floor of the State House of Assembly.
He also called on public-spirited individuals to partner with the Agency and indeed the state government in the task of waste management and waste recycling.