Yemi Adedeji, Abuja
Oladele Osnibanjo, President of Waste Management Society of Nigeria (WAMASON), says by 2020 Nigeria would be swamped with waste if the Federal Government refuses to put in place an effective and efficient waste management policy.
He noted that lack of waste management policy had driven away private investment opportunities, adding that it’s the policy that shows that their investments would yield.
Osinbanjo disclosed this in an interview with newsmen in Abuja.
According to him, “we need to think globally and act locally. Since we are part of the global community and Nigeria is an active participant. With our large population, the cost of inaction would be colossal.”
He added: “Nigeria is a golden land for waste management. UNEP came out with a publication in 2015, Global waste management outlook, out of the 50 largest landfills in the world, 4 are in Lagos.
“We are a country swimming in waste and when we don’t manage waste, health would be poor. You dare not drink from a river now because all the wastes are dumped there.
“If we don’t do anything now, by 2020, the waste we generate will double and we would all be swamped. So whether we like it or not, we have to be part of it.
“If there’s no level playing field, industries will not come because they are going to bring thousands and millions of dollars. But they can’t invest if there are ramshackle industries polluting.
“We are bringing all stakeholders together, because the first thing is awareness. We have engaged the National Assembly and we have interacted, we are also engaging the ministries also,” the president noted.
Osinbanjo therefore urged the federal government to create an enabling environment and allow the private sector drive the management of waste, guided by enforced regulations.