LCC Misses Dumpsite Relocation Deadline
The Lilongwe City Council says it will not be able to meet a deadline imposed by the Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources to relocate the city’s dumpsite as they have not identified a new place yet.
The parliamentary committee had given the city council the deadline of 25 January to relocate the dumpsite.
A week ago, the committee ordered Lilongwe City Council (LCC) and Malawi Environmental Protection Authority (MEPA) to close the Lilongwe dump site and enforce sanitation and hygiene in all markets.
Almost two weeks on, the LCC says it cannot effect the order in the said time due to financial and resource constraints.
Mayor for the city Richard Banda told us they have started clearing garbage at the site but insist it will take a little longer to complete the exercise.
Banda said there is only one machine collecting the garbage and this is slowing the progress.
“And the machine which is there is only one. So maybe tomorrow, the machine will go to the main road to remove the garbage,” he said.
He added, “When the parliamentary committee visited the place, we agreed to move the dumpsite to another location. It is not only Lilongwe city council; there is another stakeholder that is working on that. So we are working hand in hand to look for another place within or out of town to put the garbage site.”
This comes at a time residents around the dumpsite are complaining about bad smell and the health risks associated with it.
A representative of residents around the dumpsite, William Zoto, argued there is no work being done on the ground and that the site is still posing a health risk.
“Though there is a tipper which removes the garbage, it is still not making any change. There is a lot of garbage on the main road, so many rotten things on the main road and the road is not passable,” he explained.
Meanwhile, Chairperson for the Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources Welani Chilenga says they are maintaining their order to have the dumpsite relocated by next month.
“We are still maintaining that before the 2023/2024 budget session they will have done that because it is not only the city council we ordered to do that. We recommended that they do it together with the Malawi Environmental Protection Authority,” he said.
He added, “The agreement we had with them was that they had already identified a place, so it is just a matter of relocating. So, to say they have not identified a place is news to us and they should not underrate us.”
On 12 January 2023, the Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources demanded the LCC to identify a new space and relocate the city’s dumpsite arguing it is posing a health threat to the city’s residents.