‘It everyone’s duty to keep Bulawayo clean’

Bulawayo residents have been encouraged to improve on hygiene in order to complement council efforts in keeping the city clean. 

BCC has been embarking on clean-up campaigns in the city centre targeting areas populated with informal traders.   

Ward 8 Councillor Edwin Ndlovu said they took the initiative to his ward where they cleaned some areas where informal traders operate because residents were using them as illegal dumpsites.

Cllr Ndlovu urged the council to intervene in cleaning the area and enable the swift removal of overgrown grass and litter that is around the Mzilikazi building and utility workshop as some residents are now using it to dump their garbage.

“We took the cleaning initiative to our ward at Mzilikazi building workshop where we cleaned the surrounding area but people have resumed throwing litter there. May we clear that area, get rid of the overgrown grass. Residents are taking advantage of that grass and dumping litter there,” Cllr Ndlovu said.

Bulawayo Vendors and Traders Association director, Micheal Ndiweni, noted that the responsibility does not solely lie with vendors only but all residents must be involved.

“We have not directly talked to the council to partner in the clean-up campaigns at vending areas. They (council) have extended an invitation to various stakeholders and we have attended. We would yield better results if we could have joint planning. There would be adequate awareness that would improve both the attendance and implementation,” Ndiweni said. 

“We would engage our members and other associations to partner with us. It is difficult to clean together without planning together. There are various organisations that may want to participate and offer various resources needed to carry out the task.”

Ndiweni noted the need for awareness on waste management among informal traders. 

“Informal traders need to be capacitated on work management principles. They need to be capacitated on techniques that may help them to reduce waste from their wares. They need to be encouraged to properly dispose of their waste at designated areas and the council also needs to provide resources for waste disposal,” he said.

“We also need to start gravitating more towards making money out of waste. Some economies are making a lot of money through such initiatives. We should not take waste for granted, there are people who are surviving from such.”

He added, “We must enforce hygiene. People who are found littering places should be fined. This should not be limited to vendors only but to all residents. There are instances where you find people carelessly disposing of litter, making a mess of the environment.”

Bulawayo Residents Association (BURA) chairperson Winos Dube echoed the same sentiments that residents should do their best to keep the environment clean. 

“Of course concentration is within the CBD. It had become so dirty. We would like authorities to work in residential areas as well. The cleaning campaign should be spread all over the city. They prioritised the CBD (which is a good thing) because it is in the eyes of everyone but there is also need to prioritise the residential areas,” Dube said.

“All residents in Bulawayo are encouraged to take full responsibility for the city by keeping it clean. It should be well maintained by everyone, not for people to say there are institutions that are responsible for cleaning.” 

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