BULAWAYO - Councillors have expressed concern over environmental degradation resulting from improper diaper disposal methods being practiced by the public in the city.
Responding to matters arising from the Health, Housing and Education Committee report at a recently held council chamber meeting, Councillor Ncube advocated for the banning of disposable diapers in Bulawayo, citing that people were throwing disposing of them in an irresponsible manner, a practice that was making city filthy.
Councillor Chigora, of Ward 4, also rose to speak on the same issue, but argued that the banning diapers would be retrogressive given the modern times that now prevail and, also, the real problem was that people need to be educated on the hygienic disposal of such waste.
“I am not quite sure whether all of us know the correct procedure; what do you do with the diaper after using it?” said councillor Chigora.
He went further to say the city, and the country at large, had a very serious challenge when it came to such information and urged all stake holders to focus on educating people on the proper manner of disposal.
Alderman Clayton Zana urged the council to come up with a suitable framework of dealing with this issue “Besides having a policy, will have a serious challenge but, once we have a policy, it becomes easy to enforce and therefore penalise” stated Zana.
Lack of knowledge on how to get rid of the much-criticised soiled diapers, has seen residents in Bulawayo resorting to dumping randomly in undesignated areas. As the city approaches the rainy season, the addition of water to the foul contents creates a vile smelling liquid which flows along streets creating a breeding ground for all sorts of diseases.
Given recent cholera epidemics, this is a major concern to the city’s policy makers. Research shows that decaying diapers also release, into the air, methane, a dangerous and highly explosive gas that readily displaces oxygen in the atmosphere.