The waste management company has ran into several difficulties which have outpowered it in keeping towns and cities clean.
The country’s major waste management company - Cameroon Hygiene and Sanitation Company (HYSACAM) – apparently lacks the capacity to stick to its mission of keeping towns and cities clean. HYSACAM is tasked with clearing and treating garbage in some 17 cities across the country, with the latest being Kumba.
However, the growing quantity of waste produced by households, especially in Yaounde, in recent times is likely the last stroke to break the camel’s back.
Across the city of Yaounde, heaps of household wastes can been seen in virtually all neighbourhoods of the capital city. The chunks of dirt either lie bare by the roadside, leaving pedestrians to battle with it for space to commute, or are overfilling trash cans which have not been emptied for weeks.
At one collection point in Biyem Assi, the situation is even more worrisome. The collection can has been filled to capacity, yet residents, left with no other option for disposing their waste, continue to pile up dirt which is already threatening to form another hill to add to the city’s other seven natural hills. Government authorities say HYSACAM has proven to be unable to contain Yaounde city’s expanding trend.
The growing population which now produces more waste than before has also left the waste management company in a tight corner. However, HYSACAM officials still insist, despite the current shabby nature of the city, they still have the capability to handle Yaounde’s hygiene.
The company claims government is owing them up to 48 per cent of their capital, making the running of operations in the likes of fueling and maintenance of dustcarts extremely difficult. Councils in areas where HYSACAM is involved in waste management are also owing the company no fewer than FCFA 3 billion, HYSACAM asserts.
Under the convention that engages the services of HYSACAM, we learned government covers 80 per cent of the cost, while the city council of the area of operation covers the rest. In Yaounde, HYSACAM has a peculiar problem. The company has only one waste treatment centre at Nkolfoulou, on the outskirt of Yaounde, towards Soa.
Limited number of trucks have to ply far off neighbourhoods like Mendong, Simbock and Mvan as well as insufficient number of scavengers compound the problem of usually intense traffic.