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Employment records hit 12,500 in three years of Lagos Recycle Initiative

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By Moses Adeniyi

No less than 12,500 persons have been employed within the value chain of waste recycling in Lagos within the space of three years, the State Government has disclosed.

The three years period under review was September 2019 and September 2022 when the Lagos Recycle Initiative (LRI) was officially launched.

At the event by the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) to commemorate three years of Lagos Recycle Initiative (LRI), the Managing Director, LAWMA, Ibrahim Odumboni, made the disclosure, mentioning that the State has grown from the three official recyclers who formed the pioneering stakeholders as at September 5, 2019, to 157 registered recyclers in Lagos.

“What have we done since then? There were three official recyclers then (2019), but now we have over 157 registered recyclers in three years. We’ve also created job opportunities for over 12,500 persons in the last three years.

“We’ve also formalised recycling in such a way that we are now doing it with a lot of swagger.

“The values of recyclables have gone up from N15 on that day, (and) now, that same product is worth N150 – N170, not because of inflation, but because of understanding the value chain and the need for us to grow it,” Odumboni said.

He mentioned that by May 29, 2023, that the value would have appreciated to about N250 by projections, calling on Lagosians to optimise the benefit.

The LAWMA boss said efforts by investors have recorded daily processing of 4.5million plastic bottles out of Lagos and a corresponding recycled 4.5miilion bottles daily to manufacturers.

He said with engagement with stakeholders about 170 recycling centres would be established in the State before the end of 2023, warning all producers who have not joined the clean-up of plastic pollution in the State to act responsibly by keying into platforms created for same.

Other efforts the LAWMA boss mentioned were put in place within the three year period include: the introduction of the system to school curriculum with waste to wealth teachings; partnership with public and private stakeholders, among others.

Applauding the Governor Sanwo-Olu led Administration on the interest in recycling, he said the interest wasn’t for money but for sustainable environment.

He called on Lagosians to join the vision, stating that it was important for all to embrace the waste sorting system to operationalise and optimise the benefits of Waste to Wealth initiative.

Odumboni reiterated that from 1st October, the State Government would commence the enforcement of the waste bin directive demanding all households to possess and maintain a waste bin in their homes, mentioning that all defaulters risk prosecution.

He enjoined Lagosians to maintain a double sorting waste system of having a general a waste bin and a recycling waste bin.

“From the 1st October this year (2022), every household must own a waste bin. It is mandatory, it is a must, it is not negotiable. You just have to have a waste bin. It is in the law of the State.

“You must have a waste bin by 1st of October because if do not have, you will be served an abatement notice and then from the 4th of January (2023), you will stand to be prosecuted if you cannot provide an evidence of your bin. You have three months to sort yourself out to get a bin for your household,” the LAWMA boss said.

The President, Lagos Recyclers Association (LAGRA), Dr. Femi Adegoke, said the initiative as a fundamental development drive for waste to wealth has grown since 2019.

He said in line with the vision of zero tolerance for waste to protect the ecosystem, the initiative in three years has involved critical engagement, which has encouraged inclusion and expansion of waste to wealth value chain in Lagos.

According to him, the initiative has created empowerment opportunities while attracting international attention for investment in the State.

Applauding the State Governor, the State’s Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, and the LAWMA Boss for the stride in the initiative, he called on all to join the zero waste campaign to minimise waste menace through recycling system “for an efficient and sustainable circular economy.”

Speaking, the Managing Director, Polysmart Packaging Limited, Mr. Wasiu Balogun, said it was important for Lagosians to optimise the deliverables of the value chain.

He said it was important to monetise the waste to wealth value chain to solve poverty, stating that Lagos lose about N8 – N10billion annually for only pet bottles.

Speaking, the Director Public Affairs, Communication and Sustainability, Coca-cola, Nigeria, Nwamaka Onyemelukwe, said the recycling system works on collective responsibilities.

She said the campaign must be well driven across societal institutions, including schools for sustainable environment and wealth creation.

She called on all stakeholder to work with the Government to achieve the green economy initiative.

In his address, the Executive Director, LAWMA, Mr. Adekunle Adebiyi said the Agency with all stakeholders, are more determined to ensure that all efforts were “felt by residents across the length and breadth of Lagos State and most importantly the environment.”

“Lagos as a whole generates an estimated volume of 13,000 metric tons of waste daily. The daily influx of people from other states in search of greener pastures has resulted in high volume of waste generation with plastics accounting for about 17percent of this,” he said.

According to him, Indiscriminate and incessant littering of the environment with plastics have resulted to blockage of waterways and drainages, which sometimes result in flooding, destroying properties and affecting lives.

The trend, he said, has necessitated the need recycling system to convert waste to wealth.

“Most times plastic waste ends up in the ocean, polluting it, threatening ecosystems, killing biodiversity, and poisoning the food chain .

“If this trend continues, our living and livelihood will be in jeopardy and all the dumpsites will run out of space in less than five years’ time.

“Hence, the need to create value from waste through reuse, reduce and recycle so that we can decrease the volume of waste that goes to the dumpsite.

“In the recent time, the narrative is changing moving from straight line economy to circular economy where waste is seen as a resource in line with global practice,” he said.

Recall there was the launch of the BLUE BOX programme by the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu led Administration, on the 5th of September 2019, in an attempt to harness opportunities that abound in the waste sector and to promote recycling through the distribution of colour coded thrash bags for sorting at source. The Bluebox programme metamorphosed into the Lagos Recycle Initiative (LRI).

The LRI involves the collection of recyclables from the point of generation with Community Recycling/drop off centers at different Local Government Areas/LCDAs with recyclers and aggregators assigned for collection of these recyclables.

The LRI harmonises all recycling programmes of LAWMA and bring together all key players in the production, utilisation, collection, buy-back and recycling of materials in Lagos State using the PAKAM APP.

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Tinubu, UNFPA launch 2024 SWOP report in Abuja

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President Bola Tinubu, alongside the Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), on Wednesday, launched the 2024 regional State of World Population (SWOP) Report.

During the report launch, which has “Interwoven Lives, Threads of Hope: Ending Inequalities in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights” as theme, Tinubu was represented by Prof. Ali Pate, the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare.

Tinubu said “the theme comes with a narrative that reminds us that, globally we are composed of eight billion threads of hope, eight billion people interwoven with each of the threads being very unique.

“It is of note that Nigeria is among the eight identified countries to account for more than half of the projected increase in the world population up to 2050.

“The other countries are Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Pakistan, Philippines and the United Republic of Tanzania.”

He, however, said that meeting the aspirations and hopes of the unique members of these interwoven threads, who are mostly women, girls and young people, places a great demand and a sense of duty on government to keep that hope alive.

“In addition, for each of the threads to be recognised and be relevant, there is need to sustainably invest in generating quality, well-disaggregated data that will help in ensuring none of the threads is un-woven.

“The regional inauguration of the 2024 SWOP report in Nigeria and the presence of the UNFPA Executive Director is a reminder that Nigeria should prioritise data generation to provide the baseline and showcase progress toward the indicators of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“One of such data generation exercise is the conduct of the National Population and Housing Census within the 2020 round of Population and Housing census (2015-2024).

“We are consulting and working closely with the National Population Commission (NPC) to get this exercise right. We count on the support of UNFPA and other partners to get it right.”

In her address, Kanem said that the report presents important data that shows that in many countries, inequalities in such key measures as access to healthcare have been reduced.

She added that in other places, however, disparities are actually widening, and inequalities still persist everywhere.

“The report indicates that since global measurements have been kept, two countries – India and Nigeria – have recorded the highest number of maternal deaths.

“The remarkable reduction in the number of women worldwide dying in childbirth, 34 per cent since 2000 is largely attributable to progress in those two countries.

“Nigeria’s achievement in reducing maternal death rate by more than 11 per cent between 2013 and 2018 must be applauded.”

The UNFPA boss also said there had been advances in combatting Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and harmful practices in Nigeria, with a 10 per cent drop in number of adolescents subjected to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in the past decade.

She also said that politically, there had been progress as the proportion of women serving in parliaments more than doubled globally.

In spite of the gains, however, she said, progress was slowing, while by many measures it has stalled completely.

She noted that since 2016, the world made zero progress in saving women from preventable deaths during pregnancy and childbirth.

She explained that “one important reason, our report shows, is that we have not prioritised reaching those furthest behind.

“We see, for example, that barriers to healthcare fell fastest for women who are more affluent, educated and privileged.

“Many of these findings are the result of having better data than ever before. Thirty years ago, maternal mortality rates were only rough estimates.

“Today, data allows us to see clearly the unacceptable rates at which women are dying while giving life; data also shows the inequalities that are quite literally killing them.”

On Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) in Nigeria, she said that in spite of the progress recorded, it still remained high at over 1,047 per 100,000 live births.

Kanem, however, pledged UNFPA’s support for the country to change that statistic.

The Chairman, National Population Commission, Alhaji Nasir Kwarra, said that the theme of the report aptly amplifies issues that matter most beyond the numbers, emphasising the people that make up the numbers.

He requested that the UNFPA should relentlessly advocate for the conduct of the next census; support in the implementation of ideas and interventions to address key issues raised in the 2024 SWOP.

He said the implementation of the National Population Policy captured the commitments made in Nairobi (2019).

They include sexual and reproductive health, particularly of adolescent girls including prioritising family planning and keeping girls in school.

He said that the implementation would in turn, enable Nigeria manage its population, achieve the required shift in population age-structure for a Demographic Dividend (DD) to occur, as well as in the implementation of the DD Roadmap.

In a goodwill message, Sen.  Mustapha Musa, Senate Committee Chairman on National Identity and  Population, said the legislature deems the issue of population and development important.

“Particularly as it relates to the well-being of women, young people and girls, which connects with addressing the existing inequalities and ensuring that sexual and reproductive health and rights receive the deserved attention.

“I reiterate that the committee I chair will ensure that issues arising from the report will be given due attention.”

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that SWOP is UNFPA’s annual flagship report that features trends in the world population and reports on emerging themes in the field of sexual and reproductive health and rights.

It brings them into the mainstream and explores the challenges and opportunities they present for international development.

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FG hails World Bank’s support to PWDs

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The Federal Government has commended the World Bank for providing technical and financial support to Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in the country.
The Executive Secretary, National Commission for Persons with Disabilities (NCPWD), Dr James Lalu, said this on Wednesday in Abuja, during a virtual meeting with officials of World Bank.
The meeting was convened to strengthen implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) number 10 and 17 for disability inclusion in Nigeria.
Lalu draw the attention of stakeholders to the need to redesign policies and programmes of the commission to conform with the global standard.
”We need policies redesign in the area of social protection programmes because World Bank has the capacity to stimulate disability inclusion and development programme” he said.
The Executive Secretary expressed commitment to improve the welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
Also speaking, Cindy Ikeaka, a World Bank Social Development Specialist said, the bank will continue to provide technical support to the commission to ensure effective delivery of the needs of PWDs.
Ikeaka also said that the bank was working with other Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government to ensure disability data collection.
”This will ensure proper data management of persons with disabilities ” she said.
On her part, Esther Bature, the Country Coordinator of Sightsavers in Nigeria said, her organisation will continue to strengthen national systems to deliver sustainable services.
”We supported NCPWD to develop a five-year national strategic plan and this plan requires different levels of intervention.
”We are happy to see that the World Bank has supported the commission to a kind of review to include monitoring and evaluation in the plan as well as developed several developments documents,” she said.Batur
Nature also thanked the World Bank for its assistance in building the capacity of the commission’s members of staff.
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IPMAN gives Soludo 1 month to address marketers’ grievances

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The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), has given Gov. Chukwuma Soludo of Anambra one month within which to address the demands of marketers in the state or face total shutdown of operations without further notice.

Marketers in the state reached this decision at the end of the statewide meeting held in Awka on Tuesday.

Mr Chinedu Anyaso, Chairman of IPMAN Enugu Depot Community, in charge of Anambra, Ebonyi and Enugu States, who addressed Journalists after the meeting, said the association had reported cases affecting its members to the governor without any response.

Anyaso said the grievances of marketers in Anambra included the issue of consolidated revenue payable and withdrawal of all litigations against members based on multiple taxation which was not in line with the understanding IPMAN had with the Anambra government.

He said IPMAN discussed the problem of non-payment of debt amounting to about N900 million owed contractors who supplied diesel for powering streetlight projects in the state.

Anyaso also said that among the demands of the association was the demolition of part of the property of Chris Tee Nigeria limited, a marketer at Trans-Nkissi phase 1 along Onitsha-Otuocha road which was destroyed by agents of government.

He said IPMAN would not issue further notice upon the expiration of the deadline before shutting their outlets.

Anyaso thanked Chief Ken Maduako, a patron of the association, Mr Golden Iloh, member of the Anambra State House of Assembly and representative of the Anambra Internal Revenue Service, for their intervention and hoped that the Soludo administration would act on their plea to prevent the looming industrial action.

He commended Gov. Soludo for his efforts to make Anambra a peaceful and liveable state while urging him to make the business environment conducive for investors, especially oil marketers.

He pledged positive disposition of the association to continue to support his administration to succeed.

The chairman commended marketers for complying fully with the partial shutdown and attendance to the meeting, saying it was a great show of comradeship.

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