This is a personal account provided to WasteAid through our eyewitness campaign.

Please describe the waste situation where you live.

Where I live, almost 99 percent of wastes (solid municipal wastes) are indiscriminately dumped and burnt. Scavengers pick up the remaining 1 percent.

Waste recycling is not a popular concept right here in Jos. The need to do something about the ever-increasing municipal waste prompted me to delve into recycling of wastes (electronic wastes, bio-wastes, plastics etc).

I know make compressed plastic and sand bricks, kerbstones, interlocking pavers. Also working towards recycling plastic wastes into roofing tiles, balusters and a host of other building materials

Emmanuel Mabitine_Jos_Eyewitness

Do people have to take their waste somewhere or is it collected and taken away from people’s homes? Is it transported by hand, cart or motor vehicle?

Most of the time, people take their wastes to makeshift dumps. The Agency saddled with the responsibility of ensuring these wastes are properly collected and disposed is handicapped as they lack adequate vehicles, machineries and work force to effectively attend to our wastes problems.

How do most people deal with their waste? Are they generally happy with the situation or not? Why?

Most wastes are burnt indiscriminately! No right thinking person will obviously be happy with such acts.

Do you reduce your waste at home?

Yes I do. Plastics wastes are sorted out and recycled into compressed plastic and sand bricks, interlocking pavers and kerbstones. 

Are you aware of problems caused by waste where you live?

For sure, wastes make us vulnerable and susceptible to diseases apart from the damages it leaves on the environment through dangerous fumes when such wastes are burnt indiscriminately.

Uncollected waste in Jos, Nigeria_Emmanuel Mabitine
Dumped waste at roadside in Jos_Emmanuel Mabitine

Are there any good things happening with waste that you would like to share?

Yes! I have set up an organization that will embark on recycling of the various wastes. For instance, we convert bio wastes into briquettes and working towards generating cooking gas from household wastes. We also turn plastic wastes into various building materials as mentioned above

If you could make one change in how waste is managed, what would it be and why?

If I could, I would strongly advocate for proper recycling of all wastes. It is for our collective wellbeing especially as regards to climate change and its adverse effects on us all.

Who do you think is responsible for improving the waste situation?

The Government (Local, State and Federal) have Agencies but as usual…they are poorly funded and have not ventured into recycling of wastes.

Imagine the year is 2030 and we are looking back at how humans solved the waste challenge. How did we do it? What do you think made the biggest impact?

Education and proper sensitization is a key factor. That is what your organization is doing. I must confess that I have been really inspired by your organization.

Final comments:

I am looking forward to having you come over to Jos, Plateau State Nigeria. So we can create proper awareness and sentisation on waste management. It will also help in creating viable employment for a lot of our teeming youths who have no means of sustaining their livelihood.

Emmanuel Mabitine_plastic paver_Jos_Nigeria_Eyewitness
Emmanuel Mabitine_Jos_Nigeria_Eyewitness

Thank you Emmanuel, for becoming a WasteAid eyewitness.


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