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Tips on refuse disposal for healthy environment

Nigeria is grappling with a mounting crisis stemming from improper waste disposal practices, manifesting in cluttered gutters and polluted water bodies.

While the federal government has issued warnings against open dumping and emphasised good hygiene, the problem persists.

To combat this issue, several states have implemented designated sanitation days, often choosing Saturdays or Thursdays, especially in areas with bustling markets. On these days, vehicular activity and businesses temporarily cease to facilitate extensive clean-up efforts.

However, the effectiveness of these initiatives depends on public education and awareness.

Without proper education, the battle against improper waste disposal remains incomplete.

This is why some states in the country adopted a day in the week to observe sanitation and encourage cleanliness.
Some observe sanitation on Saturdays, while most states with major markets use Thursdays. On these days’ vehicular movements and businesses are closed for some specific hours.

Tips on appropriate refuse disposal

Use Waste Bins: Use designated waste bins provided by local authorities or private waste management companies. Separate your waste into categories like recyclables, organic, and non-organic. This way it will be easy to collect.

Waste Collection Services

Use waste collection services offered by the government or private companies. Avoid throwing waste in the gully or water bodies. By using waste collection services, your refuse would be collected regularly according to the schedule.

Community Clean-up

Participate in community clean-up initiatives to collect and dispose of waste properly. Encourage neighbours to join in, and don’t use sanitation days to play soccer or as an excuse to sleep in.

Avoid Illegal Dumping

Never dispose of refuse in unauthorized areas, open fields, or water bodies. Illegal dumping contributes to environmental pollution.

Reduce Waste

Minimize waste generation by practising the 3Rs: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle. Buy products with minimal packaging and reuse items when possible.

Public Awareness

Educate your community about the importance of proper waste disposal and the potential health risks associated with improper disposal. Don’t just preach it, show it by practice.

Government Effort in Curbing Indiscriminate Refuse Disposal

Stakeholders have been raising awareness, emphasising the necessity of curbing indiscriminate waste dumping. This proactive approach has sought to engage the community in maintaining a cleaner and safer environment.

Several states have consistently organized monthly sanitation exercises as part of their commitment to community cleanliness.

Citizens’ motivation to actively participate in these sanitation exercises has been bolstered by the imposition of penalties on offenders. This deterrent has encouraged compliance with waste disposal regulations and contributed to the success of sanitation efforts.

It is vital to remember that proper waste disposal is a collective responsibility, and each individual plays a crucial role in preserving the cleanliness and health of their surroundings.

Writing by Chinasa Ossai; editing by Saadatu Albashir