A mere eight days following the transition of leadership from former Governor David Nweze Umahi to Governor Francis Nwifuru of Ebonyi State, a worrisome issue has surfaced within the Abakaliki metropolis—mounting refuse on major streets. The efficient and routine disposal of waste managed by the State Ministry of Environment, which once ensured a clean environment, has started to diminish, leaving Abakaliki residents alarmed by this unsettling development.
Concerned residents, in conversations with Vanguard, expressed their dissatisfaction with the increasing presence of refuse in strategic locations across the metropolis. They voiced their worries that the recent heavy downpours, coupled with the growing piles of waste, could lead to decomposition and the outbreak of diseases if immediate and effective measures are not taken to address the menace.
Vanguard’s investigation revealed that Chinedu Ogah’s Avenue, New Kpirikpiri Market, and Benard Orogwu Street, among others, have transformed into eyesores that elicit displeasure from the State’s inhabitants. Notably, the road leading to Cirene Hotel has become an impromptu dumping ground, as refuse is carelessly discarded in the area.
Mr. Nnamdi Orji, a resident, urgently called upon the present administration, under the leadership of Rt. Hon. Nwifuru, to activate a robust refuse disposal mechanism that guarantees proper and sustainable cleanup efforts throughout the State. He emphasized the critical importance of appointing a Commissioner or Special Adviser on Environment who would assume responsibility for ensuring a healthy, conducive, and habitable environment.
Orji expressed concern about the potential health risks associated with the accumulation of refuse, particularly as the rainwater seeps through the waste. Moreover, he highlighted the growing hazard on the roads, as commuters and pedestrians now find themselves competing for space due to the encroachment of refuse onto the thoroughfares.
While some residents maintain confidence in the present administration’s ability to address this issue promptly, others urge Governor Nwifuru to swiftly engage the contractors responsible for cleanup during Umahi’s tenure or assemble a new team of local contractors to rescue the State from its current environmental challenges. The immediate intervention of the government and concerted efforts towards a cleaner and healthier environment are paramount to safeguarding the well-being of Ebonyi State’s residents.