Outsourcing worsens Gaborone waste collection

The Gaborone City Council (GCC) is once again unable to cope with waste collection after it failed to meet the target it has set for itself. GCC Town Clerk Mpho Mathe told Mmegi that due to the expansion of the city, the demand for waste collection is high and at some point they do collect waste two weeks after the scheduled date.

“We had been behind the schedule on waste collection in some areas. The truth is, Gamodubu landfill is very far and our vehicles cannot go there twice a day.  Council has eight vehicles for waste collection which are on the road while some had gone for service,” Mathe said.

GCC is divided into 113 domestic waste collection areas and each area was scheduled to be collected at least once a week.  He said the main challenge they are facing is that some private companies dump their waste in open spaces in the middle of the night.

“We are worried by waste that we normally see in open spaces, which cannot be accounted for by anyone. Our suspicion as a council is that some private companies that are engaged to collect waste do that. Though we do not have evidence, we are always called for piles of rubbish or waste especially at Block 3 location,” he said.

He said unplanned waste collection disrupts their schedule to collect waste in the yards.

In order to try to improve the situation, the town clerk said they are mobilising the residents of different locations to have a community based monitoring system so that waste can be traced. GCC had also engaged two private companies for a 12 months term for waste management services.  GCC has always complained about the tendency by certain people who dump their garden waste in the streets expecting contractors to do the collections from there.  In areas that GCC had outsourced to private companies, Mathe said collection of waste had improved. He said they have three vehicles in different locations, which collect waste dumped on the roadside.

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