KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah has directed the local government department to seek proposals from the district municipal corporations (DMCs) to undertake door-to-door garbage collection through local contractors. The directive was issued on Saturday as the CM presided over a meeting to review the progress of the month-long garbage lifting campaign initiated by the Sindh government. This step is reportedly being taken in order to make the campaign sustainable. The Sindh Solid Waste Management Authority (SSWMA) would then be assigned to collect garbage from the dustbins and dispose of it at the designated landfill sites.
Sindh Information, Archives and Labour Minister Saeed Ghani, Adviser to CM on Law, Environment and Coastal Development Barrister Murtaza Wahab, Principal Secretary to CM Sajid Jamal Abro, Karachi Commissioner Iftikhar Shalwani, Local Government Secretary Roshan Shaikh, SSWMA Director General Asif Ikram, Karachi Water and Sewerage Board Managing Director Asadullah Khan, the chairpersons of all DMCs and all deputy commissioners attended the meeting.
The CM was informed that around 283, 319 tonnes of garbage was lifted from all six districts during the period from September 21 to October 11. The drive is to continue till October 21 and cleanliness work from then onwards has to be made sustainable.
The report submitted by deputy commissioners and DMC chairpersons stated that roughly 80 to 90 per cent of the accumulated garbage has been lifted while the remaining would be cleared by October 21, 2019.
The CM concluded during the meeting that the actual problem arose with garbage being accumulated at the designated dustbins after door-to-door collection. He said that as the DMCs were responsible for cleanliness work they could be assigned door-to-door garbage collection, with directives to outsource it, and then monitor contractors to keep their assigned area neat and clean.
Shah directed the local government secretary and the commissioner to coordinate with the DMC chairpersons and respective deputy commissioners to work out a proposal. They were directed to submit the proposal to him for approval.
“I have seen all over the world that garbage is not lifted door-to-door but people of the area go to dump their garbage bags into dustbins placed at the corner of their street or handover to vehicles which visit the area once or twice a week,” said the CM, while adding that the people of our country did not demonstrate a responsible attitude towards throwing domestic trash.
All of the DMC chairpersons told the CM that most of their garbage collection vehicles and machinery were in need of repair. They said that the equipment needed to be repaired and maintained if it was to be used for front-end collection. Shah directed the finance secretary to release the necessary funds and asked the local government secretary to send a summary on the repairs by Tuesday.
The DMC chairpersons informed the CM that most of their funds were deducted at-source for the payment of their electricity bills. The CM directed the secretaries of the finance, energy and local government departments to meet with K-Electric with regards to unpaid bills and meter installations.
Shah accepted the request of DMC chairpersons to appoint sweeping staff on a daily-wage basis.
It was pointed out during the meeting that a slaughterhouse in Malir built on 50 acres of land was lying redundant. The CM said that this meant that the slaughtering of animals across the city was taking place illegally. He directed the local government secretary to discuss the matter with Karachi Mayor Wasim Akhtar and make arrangements to make the slaughterhouse functional.
Another issue brought up during the meeting was of roads being dug out to lay utility cables or for other reasons. “I have noticed that a portion of the newly constructed University Road has been dug out and hasn’t been repaired since,” said the CM. He vowed to take action against any officer who fails to get the road reconstructed. He said he would tour the city on Sunday along with the Karachi mayor and take action for every road found unrepaired.
The CM said that he had received a number of complaints pertaining to overflowing gutters at the Malir 15 Bridge. He said that wide craters had formed in the area. The KWSB managing director told Shah that the Karachi Development Authority (KDA) was working there and after completion of their work, KDA would replace old gutter lines with new ones and reconstruct the road. This would be done within the next 15 days, said the managing director.