The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode has assured Lagosians that the Cleaner Lagos Initiative which reviewed the state’s environmental laws would reduce rather than increase the hardship faced by the people with the imposition of stringent taxes.
Governor Ambode who stated this in a media chat described the initiative as a creative solution to the seemingly intractable refuse problem combating the state of aquatic splendor and a frontal attack to reduce public expenditure. He added that the initiative was borne out of his experience.
“Cleaner Lagos Initiative is borne out of my experience as a Lagosian. I have lived in Lagos for over fifty years. When you are coming into Lagos from Ibadan, the first thing you see on the right side is the dump site. Should I sit and continue to watch, the answer is no. Even for imagination sake, that thing can work, all I need is players and team members. The city is very dirty. It is not healthy and so our total wellbeing and health is defined by our health status and our productivity” Governor Ambode declared.
“I think by now people should know that I am a dreamer and I want people to dream along with me. This is like a vision. I sit down here as Governor. I have been given the opportunity to process something and improve on it and I don’t want to misuse it”, he revealed.
He said the initiative will give equal attention to all nooks and crannies of Lagos State from Ikoyi to Ayobo, adding that the consortium will divide refuse collection into layers and make the existing PSP operators bankable to carry out the job of commercial refuse collection while the consortium tackles collection of domestic refuse across the state. “We will make their business bankable and then push them to commercial refuse. So they can go to companies around and collect their monies directly. With that, the PSP operators that really do not have enough
capital will be able to employ more people and be bankable. They can go to the bank and say I have this quantum of business every month so give me a particular amount to buy new equipment”, he elucidated.
Governor Ambode said under the initiative, the people would need to pay their public utility levy once in a year and their refuse will be collected every day, adding “ the template we are using is that every ward will employ 100 street sweepers which translates to 27,500 people that will be kitted the same way all over the state. Lagos State will invest in equipment just like in London and have a zero tolerance for
dirt on our streets.”