Gambia: Dumpsite: Bakoteh / Manjai Communities Meet With KMC Officers


The communities of Bakoteh and Manjai have met with the Kanifing Municipal Council again, to definitively settle the issues of the dumpsite in their communities.


By Madiba Singhateh

The meeting was witnessed by Mr. Aboucarr Jeng and Rohey Njie who represented the two communities, while the Admin Director of KMC represented the CEO of the Municipality, Mr Pa Kalifa Sayang, who should have chaired the meeting.

Abubacarr Jeng, a representative from the community, said the meeting was held but due to the poor attendance from the side of the municipality, they couldn’t have the quorum to start with; that less than 45% of people from within the KMC did not turn up, compared to the number that came during the site visit.

“The Mayor was not present, the CEO wasn’t present and the team that was there during the previous meeting, I can say 50% of them were not present,” Jeng said.

Mr Jeng said the representative of KMC, the Admin Director, was not briefed about the suppose meeting to be held, making it difficult, but they were able to table the issues.

Mr. Jeng said regarding responses from the side of the KMC, they were not able to say something or do anything because the issues at hand, overwhelms them.

He said KMC did not gave them any alternative but unless to depend on the committee that is to be form.

He said key among the issues discussed was the swelling of the security at the site, to make sure they have enough personnel on the ground who are trained and have some operation background of dumpsites that can be taught to the people on the ground.

He said the municipality also thinks of creating employment for the young people of Bakoteh / Manjai so that they can man the site and also numerate and pay them.

He said they told them on behalf of the communities they represented, that KMC should put light and shelter in case of rains and during the night, for operation at the site to be continuously round the clock.

He said one of the measures the municipality wanted to bring in term of security is to equip and be paying them.

He said as of now the municipality did not give them any time frame regarding the dumping of waste at the site.

On the present situation at the site, Jeng said all they need is to have some gravel on the ground within the dumpsite. He said as of now people are going through the horrible smell they have gone through during the period of the past regime and the mosquitoes and flies are all back just like before.

He said their next meeting is scheduled on Tuesday next week.

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Foroyaa Newspaper, 03.08.2017

The KMC members are elected to serve the municipality which includes waste management. The Bakoteh Dumpsite poses serious health and environmental risks to the immediate residents of Bakoteh and Manjai which should be the concern of the KMC. The KMC has accepted to dialogue with the communities but it needs to do more to convince the public that it is taking this seriously. It has to come up with short term and long term solutions that can convince the residents.

It has been several weeks since the reopening of the dumpsite but the measures which were outlined by the Minister of the Environment have not been applied.

Meanwhile the health of the residents continued to be at a risk. The issue of the dumpsite has to be taken seriously.