By Rose Oranye
ANAMBRA State Government has intervened in the lingering issue of improper conduct/modalities of sanitation levy collection in Okpoko community, Ogbaru Local Government Area of the state.
The state’s Commissioner for Environment, Dr Felix Odimegwu, who led other Ministry officials to an interactive meeting with leaders of Okpoko community and the government assigned Pay-direct Waste Contractor, held recently at the Conference Hall of the Ministry of Environment, Awka, enjoined the contractor to stop forthwith any crude method of enforcing the payment of sanitation fees in Okpoko and embrace a civil and friendly approach.
Engr Odimegwu appealed to Okpoko residents to cooperate with the contractor for efficient performance to make Okpoko clean.
“This current administration kicked off at Okpoko to show the good intention of lifting the community from the disreputable tag of a ghetto to a clean, green and liveable place with the establishment of infrastructures that started with massive road construction and revamping of the general hospital. The recent uproar about uncoordinated sanitation levy collection mode should not allow us to deviate from the good works this government has in stock for the Okpoko community,” he said
While pleading for a peaceful environment that will foster the good intentions of the government, the Commissioner urged the community to choose another day apart from the monthly statewide sanitation day to improve environmental cleanliness in the area.
The Managing Director, Anambra State Waste Management Agency (ASWAMA), Engr Mike Ozoemena, apologized for inconveniences caused by misconduct in sanitation levy collection in the area, adding that payment of sanitation levy/pay direct system of waste management is in the best interest of the community.
The government assigned Pay-direct Waste Contractor in Okpoko, who recounted several meetings he held with Okpoko stakeholders to have a peaceful environment, promised to caution his enforcement team to desist from any act of touting and manhandling in the collection process.
Representatives of Okpoko Resident Landlords Association, Okpoko President-General, Okpoko Executive Committee and others present in the meeting assured that all they want is a seamless and harmonious sanitation levy collection/operation, which should be carried out civilly and peacefully in the community.
*Oranye is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State