SAD! Waste In Our Food, Brain And Nose In Bayelsa
Bayelsa is endowed with one natural resource that Nigeria places so much premium on - The Black Gold.
Some have said the presence of crude oil is more of a curse than it is a blessing to oil-rich Nigeria and some persons in Bayelsa State will have nothing more but to believe that the assumption could be true.
When you hear of Bayelsa State, one thing that comes to mind is that it is the State of the former President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, and many will naturally expect that it will be a delight to live in.
You cannot live in Aso Rock, Abuja, and return to a State where waste is now near your food plates like it adds spices to the food. God forbid!
But that is what you see now in Bayelsa.
Residents feel sad because it is not the first time that refuse dump sites within Yenagoa, are turning to mountains.
The rot which has been there for over a week now, is obstructing vehicular movement along the major road.
It had happened in 2015 when Governor Seriake Dickson began his second term bid.
that period, the Former Governor of the State, Mr Timipre Sylva and his All
Progressive Congress (APC) supporters took it upon themselves and evacuated the
refuse. Good citizens.
The current situation has been blamed on agencies that handle sanitation and their health counterpart.
Evacuation usually happens within two days, but this time, the huge amount of waste generated in Bayelsa is showing.
All that fast evacuation has become a luxury and residents now breath, eat, drink and study in very dirty environments.
the dump sites are located at strategic places including schools, markets, food canteens and
Bayelsa State residents are worried over the ugly development and think it might be related to the on-going Public Service Reform in the State.
The sad thing is that the mounting waste is not as a result of a technical hitch.
A sanitation/health worker, Mr Moneyman Ogi, explained that their inability to clear the refuse was as a result of the refusal by workers whose duty it was to create space at the permanent dump site along Amassoma Road to do their job.
He further narrated that the Environmental Sanitation Authority Chairman, Mr Enogha Ayalla, was worried over the matter and had instructed them to try their best and evacuate the refuse to allow easy passage for vehicles and pedestrians.
The schools are not left out, as students are finding it hard to concentrate and study. They struggle between paying attention and holding their breath to avoid the stench from the waste.
A teacher at a Community Primary school, Edepie, said: "The stench from the refuse in front of our school is hindering us from paying attention to our academic activities".
"We are not comfortable with the presence of this refuse site and our students might even fall sick".
One thing that will make her job and the study of the pupils now is for the Sanitation Authority to do their job of keeping the State clean.
Some students of the school wants the government to stop people from dumping waste in front of their school.
"It is smelling too much," the said.
At Opolo market, some traders whose tables are by the refuse site complained.
"We no dey sell again. Nobody fit stand here to buy something because of smell," the lamented.
Asked if the stench does not bother them, they replied that they were already used to the smell.
It is a tough one for residents who are now pleading with the Sanitation Authority Chairman to try his best to prevent future reoccurrence.