Refuse heaps that were part of the 70s and 80s are returning back to Port Harcourt city as some places in the city are beginning to have mountain of rubbish.
At places such as Jeftonic junction and Bori camp back gate along the East West road, the refuse has grown to high heaven.
Also, at Rumuodara town hall and old Agip estate along Okporo road, piles of rubbish stood like a hill. In Diobu axis of Port Harcourt, heaps of refuse littered the whole stretch of the median, from Emenike to Ikoku bus stop.
It is the same scenario at Eleme junction, Rumukwurushi, Eneka, Igwuruta, Old Port Harcourt township, Trans Amadi, Slaughter, Woji, Rumuokoro, Isaac Boro park, Artillery, Rumuomasi and other parts of the city.
Some of the residents who spoke to TNN complained that the horrid smell from the rubbish is threatening their health. They feared that there could be an epidemic if the refuses are not evacuated. They, therefore, urged the state government to come to their rescue.
A resident who gave her name simply as Mrs. Amadi said, “It is an eyesore coming out to see the environment so dirty, causing nuisance to people around. I don't really understand what is happening. We need the government to come and do something to ensure that we have garbage free surroundings”.
Another resident, Mr. Kingsley Samuel, complained that the refuse dump in front of his mechanic workshop was crippling his business.
“The refuse is terrible. This refuse dump in front of our workshop has made this place a no go area. We don't have customers again because of that refuse dump there. It used to cause a lot of hold-up and accidents on this road. As you can see, it has almost closed the road. Trailers at times crush people on this spot because of the dump, which has narrowed the road. We need the government to help us”.
Mr. Joseph, another mechanic said “it is disturbing us. It has been here for more than 3 months. See how they littered this entire place. This place is very nasty. If you check around, you will see rubbish in the pavement because the rain is carrying it to everywhere. You can see the gutter is very dirty because the rain has washed the rubbish into it. It is causing sickness to us”.
TNN investigation revealed that the cause of the high heap of rubbish might have been as a result of government's inability to pay the contractors who in turn abandoned the refuse.
Every attempt to confirm this from the media aide to the chairman of Rivers State Waste Management Agency (RIWAMA), Mr. Jerry Nneedam was futile as he refused to pick his calls.