KARACHI: Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) and all the six District Municipal Corporations (DMCs) have expressed their inability to clean the metropolis until the Sindh government issues special grant for repair of their faulty vehicles that are used in garbage collection.
More than half of the vehicles that are used in garbage collection in all the DMCs and KMC are out of order and need special package or funds from the Sindh government to fix them. The KMC's municipal commissioner, Badar Jamil, told The Express Tribune that they have around 25 vehicles, which are completely out of order and need massive repair work.
For the last five years, said Jamil, they haven't received any special grant from the government for the purpose and are thus not able to repair their vehicles. He claimed that the KMC is already a defaulter and is not in the position to take further loans.
Lack of vehicles
The DMCs, which have the prime responsibility of garbage collection in their respective districts, have been facing immense shortage of vehicles. According to the DMC East's Machine Pool Depot director, Mobin Shaikh, the DMC has around 100 vehicles, out of which 40 are out of order. He said that around 700 tons of garbage is generated on a daily basis in the East district and they are able to lift only 300 tons of it.
Meanwhile, a chairman of the Union Committee in East district, requesting anonymity, said that whatever grant they receive from the government in the form of Octroi Zila Tax is used in paying salaries to their staff and they are left with nothing to use for development work. The official claimed that recently, they repaired a few of the vehicles on their own for Eidul Azha and Muharram.
DMC Central chairman Rehan Hashmi, who belongs to the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), said that around 75% of their vehicles used for garbage collection in District Central are out of order. "We have asked the Sindh government to either provide us with vehicles for the time being or repair our vehicles on their own if they are not ready to issue us any grant," he said. Hashmi added that the district generates 3,500 tons of garbage every day and they are only able to lift 1,500 to 1,700 tons.
DMC Korangi chairman Nayyar Raza, who is also from the MQM, said that out of 100 vehicles, only 25 are out on the roads collecting garbage. When the City District Government Karachi was abolished in 2010, all of their vehicles were on the roads functioning properly, he said. In the last six years, he said, most of their vehicles have become scrap and no fund is being issued by the Sindh government for maintenance.
Raza added that now they will need to buy new vehicles as it is useless to repair the old ones that are in poor condition. Similarly, Pakistan Peoples Party's elected chairman for District South, Malik Muhammad Fayaz, said that out of 192 vehicles in his district, 30 to 40 garbage collection vehicles are completely damaged to the point that they cannot be repaired.
Even though he agreed that they are facing shortage of funds, Faraz said that the DMC can arrange funds from its own local taxes. For major repair work, he said, they have written to the Sindh government for special grants. According to him, around 1,200 tons of garbage is generated in District South daily, out of which 1,000 tons is only transferred to the landfill sites.
Meanwhile, no officials of DMC Malir and DMC West were available for comments. Local government secretary Baqaullah Unar did not respond despite repeated phone calls.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 14th, 2016.
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