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An evaluation of solid waste management with specific reference to the municipality of Maputo City (Mozambique)
Manhica, Elsa Alberto Pondja
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One of the greatest problems Mozambique is currently facing is the increased involvement of sectors in producing large amounts of solid waste on a daily basis. These sectors are involved in activities that take place in homes, industry, mining, agriculture and commerce. As a result, this problem needs to be treated efficiently by the Municipality of Maputo. Solid waste produced each day in Maputo is not only an aesthetic problem but poses a threat to citizens' health and it damages the environment. With the production of large amounts of waste each day, the Municipality of Maputo is faced with an ineffective solid waste management system. This ineffectiveness is due to a number of reasons, which include lack of resources, inadequate or no staff training, poor management of solid waste by both the municipal and the government, inappropriate laws to regulate solid waste collection, poor control of such laws in terms of removal and disposal of the waste, using past colonial methods for dealing with solid waste and poor community involvement, The problem not only affects the Municipality of Maputo but it also affects both citizens and the environment. Ineffective solid waste management is linked to poor management, lack of resources, poor staff training, and unskilled public officials. The city gets dirtier as the amount of waste increases day by day, due to the fact that citizens living in rural areas have immigrated to the city looking for work after the civil war, which took place between 1977 and 1994. Emerging from a severely damaged war-torn economy, Mozambique is still in the process of reconstituting many of its public institutions. Communities, local government, industry, commerce, civil society, academics and religious organisations can no longer turn a blind eye to poor solid waste management. Instead, they need to join to fight against poor management of solid waste. The current situation demonstrates that too few individuals, non-profit organisations and private companies are involved in solid waste management activities. Effective solid waste management can only be effective if it engages all producers of waste and captures the policy strategies, planning and challenges of sustainable development.