Abuja, the vibrant capital city of Nigeria, stands as a symbol of progress and development, attracting visitors from around the globe. However, the city’s rapid growth and urbanization have also brought challenges, particularly in the area of waste management. Maintaining a clean and healthy environment is crucial not only for aesthetics but also for public health and sustainability.
Dr. Fred Barivure Kpakol, the Senior Special Assistant to the FCT Minister on Environment and Waste Management, recently emphasized the importance of individual and collective responsibility in keeping Abuja clean. He urged residents to adopt a mindset shift, acknowledging that their actions significantly impact the city’s cleanliness.
“All negative attitudes towards making the Capital [Abuja] city unclean and dishevelled must change,” Kpakol asserted. “We must imbibe that and help make the work of city cleaners easier.”
Echoing Kpakol’s sentiment, Engr. Osi Braimah, the Director of the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), underscored the Board’s commitment to achieving the FCT Minister’s vision of a clean, safe, and functional city.
“There will be a remarkable and rapid improvement of waste disposal very soon in the Federal Capital City,” Braimah stated.
To address the issue of funding for waste management, Kpakol proposed exploring innovative approaches beyond traditional subventions. He envisioned a future where waste management becomes a self-sustaining system, generating revenue through waste reduction, reuse, and recycling initiatives.
“Waste alone, if well managed, should be made to generate funds to take care of itself when we strictly begin to implement the principles of reduce, reuse and recycle,” Kpakol explained.
This shift towards waste-to-value strategies aligns with global trends in sustainable waste management. Cities worldwide are embracing circular economy principles, transforming waste from a burden into a resource.
The responsibility for keeping Abuja clean extends beyond government agencies and residents. Businesses also play a critical role in ensuring proper waste disposal and minimizing their environmental footprint.
Ibrahim Alhassan Babayo, the Chairman of the Association of FCT Solid Wastes Contractors, stressed the importance of prompt payment to contractors to ensure continued service delivery.
FCT Infrastructure Development: FCT Minister Wike Demonstrates New Commitment to Fulfilling President Tinubu’s Infrastructure Goals
“Since they have been assured of prompt payments, the Association will continue to sacrifice and offer the services despite the astronomical inflation being witnessed presently in Nigeria,” Babayo said.
The collective efforts of residents, businesses, and the government are essential to achieving Abuja’s full potential as a clean, sustainable, and resilient city. By embracing a culture of environmental responsibility and adopting innovative waste management practices, Abuja can set an example for other cities across Africa and beyond.