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Lagos arrests 30 cart pushers for dumping refuse on road medians

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Barely 48 hours after the Lagos State government banned the activities of cart pushers in the state, no fewer than 30 cart pushers were yesterday arrested by the task force for dumping refuse indiscriminately at midnight on road medians in some sections of the state.

Chairman of the state’s task force on environmental and other special offences (Enforcement Unit), SP Olayinka Egbeyemi, who spoke to journalists, said the arrest was in line with the recent ban on the activities of cart pushers and wheelbarrow operators.

Egbeyemi, who affirmed that the activities of cart pushers in the state are illegal, said investigations found them culpable in dumping refuse on the roadside, especially at night, thereby sabotaging efforts by the government to keep the state clean.

He said government is poised to go all out to prosecute any persons found to be working against the new waste management policy encapsulated in the Cleaner Lagos Initiative (CLI), saying the programme is designed to revolutionalise waste administration in line with global best practices when fully operational.

“There are reports that refuse are littering Lekki, Victoria Island, Ajah and other parts of the state and investigations reveal that it is the handiwork of unscrupulous elements within the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) and their outside sponsors who are not comfortable with the new arrangement for the management of waste in the state and are hell bent on sabotaging government effort and frustrating them from carrying it out.

“The government has vowed to go all out against the saboteurs and after their sponsors and punish them in line with the laws of the state.

“We also need to let Lagosians know that it is illegal to use cart pushers to evacuate refuse and they should stop encouraging it. There are PSP vehicles that come around to pack refuse and they are the ones they should patronise.

“We want to notify all these cart pushers that their activities are illegal in Lagos. Lagos is a mega-city and we have all it takes to collect refuse. So, the issue of going to the streets and collecting refuse and then dump same on the road is an act of sabotage to the government,” he said.

Egbeyemi said the suspects arrested would be charged to court for prosecution, just as he assured that government would leave no stone unturned in keeping the state safe and clean.

Besides, the task force chairman said the enforcement would continue across the state until the activities of cart pushers are completely brought to a halt.

Lately, there has been public outcry for government to rid the state of filth, as heaps of refuse daily become a common sight in most parts of Lagos.

At some point, Ambode was forced to order the newly elected local council chairmen to take clearing of waste within their communities as a priority, while also urging citizens to be patient, as they await the commencement of the new waste management system kicking off this week.


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