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Islamabad

January 25, 2015

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Installing garbage bins a big challenge for RWMC, Albayrak

Cleanliness and solid waste management project worth $81.39 million has been launched in the city union councils. Rawalpindi Waste Management Company (RWMC) and Albayrak of Turkey under a seven-year agreement shall manage solid waste of parks, streets and squares through mechanical and vacuum vehicles, besides improving cleanliness.
“It’s really pleasing a group of sweepers with brooms take to the streets to scrub the city clean. But without stripping lampposts and walls of layers of posters and wall chalking, repairing/redesigning the overflowing drains, linking all buildings in commercial and residential localities to these drains, eliminating the illegal ugly speed breakers, plugging up the potholes on the streets, erecting fences around open spaces, and removing stains on doors and windows, what the city would look like,” remarks Azhar Sajjad, a painter.
“Previously many well-meaning attempts to create facilities for the city residents ended up in smoke. Some projects were vandalized like plantation across roads; rules for road divider grills and overhead bridges were always violated by the pedestrians. In the past bigger garbage bins installed on city roads by the city fathers were always seen brimming with un-cleared garbage. The situation is the same just now even after RWMC/Albayrak’s welcome move,” says Rafaqat Ali, a commercial college teacher.
Amir Ali, a school teacher, says: “Seemingly simple things that work overseas like trash cans don’t work well in Rawalpindi. RWMC/Albayrak have tried their best and installed dustbins branded with their logo. How long will they last only time will tell?”
“Whatever the height of the dustbin from the ground, it cannot block the view to the mess within. Whatever waste material fetches money is scavenged from the dustbin either by sweepers themselves or by street children. In the process of scavenging, garbage often gets out of the dustbin killing the very purpose of making the city

streets better-looking,” says Fizza Naqi, a resident of UC 79.
“The RWMC/Albayrak promised to give each house a packet of garbage bags to collect and put their daily garbage in them to ensure they don’t dump garbage at street corner or open spaces -- and connected them directly to pickup lorry in the morning. Unfortunately no package of garbage bags has been given to them,” says Shabeeh Hasan, a resident of Faisal Colony.
“It is RWMC/Albayrak’s responsibility to keep the city clean every day as it is paid for that. And every person as a citizen believes he has a right to get a street cleaned to his desire, if he is made to pay for it. What is more shocking is the fact that RWMC/Albayrak’s sweepers knock at every door, demand chai pani and cigarette money from the residents of many localities,” says Razi Abbas, a clerk in a private company.
“Of our many civic problems, I view the problem of visible filth on our streets as a behavior and attitude problem. This can be achieved without spending money by making a law to fine those throwing garbage and littering. It requires coming up with smart ideas to change people's rooted cultural behavior and attitudes. And making sure those ideas work,” says Dua-e-Fatima, living in Gulzar-e-Quaid.
“City residents’ awkward behavior certainly needs a sea change. The other day garbage caught fire when someone tossed cigarette butts in the dustbin. Too often, do-gooders try to educate people and create awareness programs about waste management, and get frustrated that these uneducated people just do not understand,” adds Fatima.

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