Soroti City authorities are planning to hire a private firm to manage garbage collection in the new market.
The 24 Billion Shillings market was constructed with funding from the African Development Bank and was commissioned by President Yoweri Museveni in November. It’s expected to commence operations next week after the resettlement of 1,316 vendors.
However, Soroti city is currently struggling to manage garbage following the breakdown of garbage trucks.
The city relies on two trucks that include one skip loader and tipper lorry for collecting and transporting waste to the garbage recycling plant located about five kilometres away from the city centre. Soroti City produces on average, 60 tons of garbage daily but the available trucks collect about ten tons each day when they are in good mechanical condition.
Moses Otimong, the Acting City Clerk Soroti, says that they are considering a public-private partnership specifically for the new market once it is operationalized. He explains that whereas the council has been managing garbage, they have had challenges with finances which affect garbage collection and management.
He notes that they have come up with Soroti Main Market Operations and Maintenance Plan that will be manned by a private firm to keep the market clean.
Otimong revealed that they have requested 600 Million Shillings through Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructural Development- USMID to help the city council acquire garbage equipment.
He also revealed plans to levy fees to every business in the city for garbage collection. Otimong says that all the proposals await the approval of the council.
Margret Akia, a resident of Pamba Ward in Soroti City West Division says they pay some porters from the city to pick garbage in the compounds.
“Each household in our area pays at least 1,000 shillings to the porter to pick garbage but we don’t know where he dumps it. When you move around is when you notice the presence of garbage in some corners”, he said.