By Madiba Singhateh
The Mayor of the Kanifing Municipal Council, Yankuba Colley, said his council does not organize the national monthly cleansing, locally known as “Set Settal,” but they are one of the principal participants of it.
Mayor Colley said this during a press briefing held at his office on Wednesday, 02nd August 2017.
Speaking to journalist, the Mayor of KMC said the last “Set Settal” that happened was political motivated.
The Mayor said some people made the exercise a political affair, when it is a national one.
Mayor Colley said his council had and will always participate very well in ‘‘Set Settals.’’
He said when they were informed by the National Environment Agency, NEA, about the exercise, they communicated back to them to wait, because at that moment there was a lot of waste to be collected by his council within the greater Banjul area.
The Mayor said his council wrote to them to wait, because they also wanted to mobilise both human and material resources so that refuse collection can be made easier for them. However, he said the NEA, decided to continue with the exercise, which hindered refuse collection afterwards because the mobilization of material resources especially vehicles, was not done properly.
He said those who organized the setsetal only participated in it for that day only and the rest was left to the municipality, afterwards.
Mayor Colley also thanked the gallant soldiers of the Gambia National Army for the immense assistance of waste collection they did after the exercise.
Mayor Colley added that the major workforce on waste gathering and collection is done by the elders as the youths do not want to participate in such jobs; that because of the age and numbers of the workers and the quantity of the waste gathered, they were not able to finish the work on the day of the exercise.
The Mayor said his council puts aside D300,000.00 monthly, to clean up the mess; that since the former regime, his council has never organized such national cleansing exercises.
Mayor Coley asserted that it is the responsibility of his council to take charge of all waste generated in the municipality, but that when it comes to national cleansing exercises, the organizing authorities should also help in the mobilization efforts especially in material resources such as vehicles to enable a timely collection of the immense waste that will be generated from it.
Mayor Colley lamented the size of the municipality and said council alone cannot do the collection of the waste generated from such exercise on time.
He implored on the NEA as the main organizers responsible for the national cleansing exercise to make the right consultations on time, so that his council and all other sectors that would want to sincerely participate in the exercise, can make the necessary human and material resource mobilisation.
“If you are helping Government, you do not create problems for that Government you want to help,’’ Mayor Colley said.
He concluded that we should work with consent and put the Gambia first.