UN-Habitat joins Mombasa residents for World Cleanup Day

UN-Habitat Executive Director Ms. Maimunah Sharif joined hundreds of Mombasa residents in a clean up campaign at the weekend. The campaign was part of a worldwide event that saw millions of people in 144 countries join hands in the Let’s Do It! movement to clean up the world in a single day. Participants were drawn […]

UN-Habitat Executive Director Ms. Maimunah Sharif joined hundreds of Mombasa residents in a clean up campaign at the weekend. The campaign was part of a worldwide event that saw millions of people in 144 countries join hands in the Let’s Do It! movement to clean up the world in a single day.

Participants were drawn from far and wide; The County Government of Mombasa, National Government officials UN-Habitat, UN Environment, American Embassy in Kenya, Kenya Alliance Association, Red cross, academic institutions, residents of Mombasa among others.

In his speech, the cabinet secretary, Ministry of Environment Mr. Keriako Tobiko emphasized that vision 2030 picked waste management as a major national issue that needed to be addressed urgently. To respond to this the Ministry of Environment and Forestry has developed several policies, key among them being the Sessional Paper on Environment Policy which addresses waste management.  The waste management agenda is further legislated in EMCA Cap 287 and its associated Waste Management Regulations 2006. In addition, the National Solid Waste Management Strategy further elaborates actions to be taken to address the waste challenge at national and county level. Mr. Tobiko was impressed that several counties have set up monthly clean ups as a way to improve waste management, he urges this to continue to increase public participation in the clean ups.

In her address, the UN-Habitat Executive Director expressed her gratitude to the Government of the Republic of Kenya, the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, as well as the County Government of Mombasa in keeping the city and its environment clean. She encouraged all to maintain these efforts while adjusting to the ever-evolving opportunities and challenges of urbanization. “There is great potential for the private sector and industries to not only reduce waste generation but to make their operations more profitable by re-thinking waste. On 1 October we join World Habitat Day global observance hosted by Kenya. This year’s theme is on Municipal Solid Waste Management and focuses on Waste-wise Cities – promoting the idea that waste can be a resource and not only a problem. UN-Habitat stands ready to support the Government and local communities in addressing municipal waste management challenges in the context of sustainable urbanization.”

Mr. Cyrille-Lazare Siewe, UN Environment county Director in his speech emphasized that “we have to do everything we can to make sure that the environment is protected, this is a resource”.

Deputy Governor of Mombasa Dr. William Kingi said “this day gives us time to focus on how important our environment is. The County through the Ministry of Environment, waste management and energy county is working towards achieving sustainable ways in managing waste, we are now implementing our integrated waste management plan, our solid waste collection has increased from 30% to 60% we are sure that with support from our partners who are here today we will be able to increase our collection to 80%. I am looking forward to have Mombasa County as the first clean city in Kenya, l believe that with strategic partnerships we can achieve this”.

In His speech Dr. Godfrey Nato the County Minister for Environment, waste management and Energy said “ we have organized and participated in a  week long build up events to mark this important day. Thank you to all who have taken part in the awareness week. The women caucus that took place on Thursday was a platform to inform women on how to take a role in waste management and they have decided that they will be in the frontline to champion on the need to manage solid waste.  Today we held five different  cleanups in the city of Mombasa. As a county we have put in place a legal framework through Mombasa County solid waste management Act – this should help us manage our waste better.”