Residents of Anambra State have been told to be consistent in the payment of their taxes and other related waste management fees to enable the Anambra State Waste Management Authority (ASWAMA) meet up with the increasing demands on waste management in the state.
Managing Director of ASWAMA, Mr Mike Ozoemena made this plea while exchanging views with news men, after an appearance before the state legislature, at the Anambra State House of Assembly complex Awka.
Recently, the state government had increased the state waste collection and management fees, and planned enforcement.
The new tariff did not however go down well with citizens, most of whom complained that the rates were too high for them to afford, considering the economic hardship in the country.
The Anambra State House of Assembly had summoned the ASWAMA MD for allegedly increasing the rates from what it used to be without the approval of the relevant arms of government.
But while speaking with newsmen, the MD noted that the current ASWAMA law which was made in 2015 can no longer carry the present realities on ground, hence the need to review it.
He thanked members of the 7th House of Assembly for resolving in their wisdom to amend some sections of the law.
“It is not possible to get waste management to the level we want it with the former rates which was fixed when diesel sold at eighty-five naira; now a litre of diesel is about eight hundred naira.
“Again, with the increase in population, it has become impossible for government to sustain the subsidy on waste collection.
“We also know that there is a massive drop in Federal Allocation and government is looking internally for funds to continue to do what is supposed to be doing for the people.
“That is just what we did,” he said.
Mr Ozoemena urged people of Anambra who are desirous of a clean, green and liveable mega City to be ready to play their parts, which is the payment of their ASWAMA fees and they will in turn be able to hold government accountable.
“Our people must understand that this administration means well for them. Many infrastructural projects are coming up, several roads are being flagged off in the state too and all these require funds.
“There is no way government can make do with the lean resources available to the state if we also have to encumber them with the amount of money necessary for waste management which runs into billions,” the MD noted.
The ASWAMA Boss while pleading for the understanding of Anambra residents, considering the current economic situation in the country, noted that contractors must be paid, the machines need to be serviced and not to talk of diesel.
He called on residents of the state to sustain the prompt payment of their ASWAMA fees and other related taxes to enable the state government deliver on the expected mandate.