COUNSEL Mulambo Haimbe has exposed a scam in which Patriotic Front (PF) cadres are charging K20 each household of Bauleni Township to dump garbage at an allotted open space near the old Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) Transmitter.
This money collected by cadres is clearly fraudulently obtained as the heaped garbage has remained uncollected for many years, thus raising fears of water and airborne disease such as dysentery, cholera and typhoid outbreak.
When reached for a comment, Counsel Haimbe expressed worry that the people he is seeking to represent in the august house when polls are conducted within a year and seven months are facing prospects of a Cholera outbreak as a consequence of uncollected garbage.
“PF cadres are charging Bauleni residents to dump their refuse here (open site near the old ZNBC Transmitter). Each household is compelled to pay K20 whenever they dump their rubbish(before it is legally disposed of to the designated area),” lamented Haimbe.
Sadly, Mr Haimbe cried foul that though a lot of money is collected from households to clean the environment, instead of removing the garbage, the named PF fraudsters end up chewing the money, ignoring the ugly sight.
He said the United Party for National Development (UPND) led by Hakainde Hichilema will transform Zambia’s status quo of poor hygiene which is a scandal sustained by lack of political will to clean the environment.
“Money is actually collected from the two sites within Bauleni Township; the community is now up in arms, saying ‘we pay in order to pile the garbage in designated areas. Residents are justified to query why garbage collection firms are not periodically removing the disposed waste, which makes Cholera an annual ritual,” quizzed a concerned Haimbe.
The Lusaka Central Constituency parliamentary aspirant is worried that with the rains mounting, uncollected waste will contaminate ground water as residents depend on substandard boreholes, which do not meet Water Resource Management Authority (WARMA) standards.
Counsel Haimbe added “Clearly, that is a Cholera situation going to happen and as you know, this waste sinks into the ground water and here, we have situations where people have boreholes which do not meet standards, hence increasing risks and possibility of contamination.”
The Lusaka humanitarian, with a passion to make lives better among vulnerable community emphasised the need for political will to deal with waste management.
Borrowing a cue from the biblical call to disciplining a child as early as is possible, Counsel Haimbe believes involvement of local communities in waste management activities will transform Bauleni Township into a clean, green and health residence.
“This is a simple thing to solve, as it is a question of discipline, giving proper authority to grassroot communities through decentralized service interventions. I believe that once members themselves and not cadres, take charge, we shall all build sustainable communities. All these are civil things that can change overnight with political will. The risk of contamination is too high. That is a simple thing to solve; as it is a question of discipline in giving proper authority or even requiring community members themselves to run garbage collection interventions instead of political cadres doing it. All these are civil things that you can change overnight with political will. Is there way of doing something better considering the fact that cadre mentality is too overwhelming for the Patriotic Front? The PF has no control over these cadres, and no one can stand on their way. You even see as we speak here, you will see four or three of them charging buses to load passengers on the road,” protested Mr Haimbe, adding: “There is too much cadrerism in the PF at the expense of social service provision to local people.”
He questioned services provided by cadres as transiting and disembarking commuters did not require to be coerced to boarding buses.
“Why should a transporter load passengers from undesignated points? Why are they preventing others from loading, except those who toe a particular political line? It is a sad situation that cadrerism is too much under this PF regime. These people do not want to share income with others, especially transporters perceived to be opposition sympathizers,” noted Mr Haimbe.
Aside from the law criminalizing taunts, most bus stations and bus stops are teaming with cadres, whose unregulated activities continuously deny local authorities countrywide of revenue.
And Counsel Haimbe said it is unfortunate that the Patriotic Front (PF) Government used the launch of Keep Zambia, Clean and Green and Healthy’ as a mere or political gimmick, pointing out that as rains mount, the ruling party would be exposed.
Counsel Haimbe regretted that barely a couple of years after the ‘Keep Zambia Clean, Green and Healthy Campaign’ was launched; the country has become extremely dirty.
“Not too long ago, teams of concerned citizens could be seen countrywide cleaning communities and household following the ‘Keep Zambia Clean, Green and Healthy Campaign’ every month end or precisely, on the last Saturday of a particular month. Clearly, one can say or conclude that it was a mere campaign gimmick; that is what it was, nothing more, and nothing less. Why is it not happening anymore? We are not seeing these so called leaders dealing with the ‘Keep Zambia Clean, Green and Healthy Campaign’ when it matters the most! We are on the blink of a Cholera epidemic; there are no sufficient toilets in the city. It is sad that most traders and commuters defecate in pubic indiscriminately. People are using open areas to defecate and urinate. This is one of the reasons compelling us to seek public office so as to build a better City of Lusaka!,” an optimistic Haimbe said.
Ironically, President Lungu has stopped his monthly assembling of Ministers and other Government officials to carryout cleanings.
Counsel Haimbe wondered why the Lusaka City Council (LCC) through its Executive Mayor, Miles Bwalya Sampa had lamentably failed to deal with drainage problems in the Central Business District (CBD), despite placing high premium on the matter at hand.
“I have noted with concern what is happening in Lusaka at the moment. Just yesterday, (Monday 6th January 2020), we saw very disturbing images…We had a single rainfall that flooded the major bus stations in Lusaka. We all know of the situation where drainage water is not flowing and acts as a bleeding ground for water and airborne disease such as dysentery, cholera and typhoid outbreak countrywide. We all know that Cholera is a perennial problem in the City of Lusaka so quite clearly, the authorities that are supposed to be dealing with these matters are not doing so, yet we have had situations where people are given contracts during dry seasons on the pretext that they will solve drainage problems in Zambia. What is actually happening? We must ask ourselves as citizens where are these resources going? Why are they failing to deal with these problems when resources have been allocated?,” asked Counsel Haimbe, as he wondered why the Lusaka City Mayor Miles Sampa had tolerated dirtiness in the capital city.
“Where is the Lusaka City Council? Where is the Executive Mayor, who was elected on the pretext of keeping this city clean? Where is Lusaka Province Minister, Bowman Lusambo? They are busy demolishing structures instead of sorting out the problems that we have. We are looking at the epidemic and I am talking about the CBD. Before we go to the townships, where we have similar refuse problems, let us put people who are in office to account. They should respond to the people of Zambia; they should respond to the people of Lusaka, why there is so much dirtiness, when this should not be so? We demand for answers,” concluded Counsel Haimbe, 19 months before Zambians vote on Thursday, 12th August 2021.