The Lagos State Government has dislodged scavengers at Olusosun Landfill, Ojota, citing health and safety concerns from their illegal activities, including burning of tyres, which could trigger a major fire incident.
Olusosun Landfill, one of the largest in the State, copes with the challenge of scavengers rummaging the site for recyclable items, posing significant danger to people and environmental health.
Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab, hinted that the dislodgement operation was chiefly for the well-being of people living close to the landfill.
He said, “It is our foremost responsibility to ensure the well-being of residents of Lagos. The activities of scavengers at the Olusosun Landfill have raised concerns for the health and safety of the scavengers themselves and the larger community. From time to time, we must take steps to protect the people and environment. Their activities could trigger an inferno on the site and this we need to prevent”.
Wahab further explained that the state government was committed to enhancing the overall waste management system in the state, ensuring it aligned with the global best practice of safety, environmental sustainability and public health, adding that similar action would be replicated in other landfills in due course.
Managing Director/CEO of the Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), Dr. Muyiwa Gbadegesin, said the Authority would continue to work closely with communities, stakeholders and experts to implement salutary measures that safeguard the environment and well-being of residents.
He noted that shanties erected on the site would be dismantled, as scavengers would no longer be allowed to live there, but would be duly profiled and allowed to operate only during official work hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.