Refuse Management and Sanitation Board (REMSAB), an agency of the Kano State Government in charge of waste evacuation and disposal, is at the moment sourcing for interested investors in turning the over 96,000 metric tons of waste being generated within Kano metropolis into wealth creation.
The move, according to the management of REMSAB is geared at raising the profile of the state in Nigeria’s growing waste industry, which experts say is currently valued at over #98 billion.
Solid waste management is viewed by many by residents of Kano, as one of the most pressing environmental challenge in urban and rural areas of the state, in recent times, as the population of the state continues to grow.
Latest data of NBS puts the population of Kano state at close to 15 million people, does making the state the most populous in the country, as well as one of the largest waste generator in the northern part of the country which experts believe represents a huge investment opportunity.
The huge expansion in waste generation is already triggering a move to revive the existing instance legislations, and the host of policies and regulations enacted by the state government regarding solid waste management and control, Abdullahi Muazu Gwarzo, managing director, REMSAB told BusinessDay, in Kano.
Gwarzo, who spoke through, Shanaya`u Abdullahi Jubrin, director of operations of the agency, disclosed that the agency which is already in a discussion with AFD, and EU in area of capacity development is also seeking partnership with local and international players in the waste management sector, as a way of addressing the mounting challenge posed by the waste in the state.
He revealed that the quest to involved private players was borne out of the need to reduce the burden of leaving the collection and disposal of waste in the state to government alone, according to him, the administration of Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has been the sole financial of waste management in the state.
“The overall objective of the waste management policy of the Governor Ganduje Administration is directed at ensuring a sustainable, effective and efficient collection and disposal of waste in the state, and this is what we have been doing.
“That is why on assuming power, he declared two days ‘Keep Kano Cleaning Campaign’ which entails mobilizing all the public servants, and the entire state to evacuate waste from all parts of the state.
“Under this policy, he went ahead to boost investment in the purchase of necessary equipment and tools for waste collection and disposal, in addition to developing and motivating human elements that will execute the designated tasks outlined.
“Some of the specific equipment and tools purchased, including 26 brand new Truck and 50 Tricycles for the evacuation of waste. The Tricycles were purchased for the purpose of evacuating the waste from areas that the Trucks cannot reach” Gwarzo explained.
He further stated that the government also purchase two Pay Loaders and two Bulldozers for the purpose of smoothing the evacuation of waste to dump, Waste Collection Buckets were also purchased and positioned at strategic places in the metropolis.
“The purchase of the Buckets was to ensure effective waste collection along the value chain, and to ensure proper cleaning of the Streets within the Urban areas, Sweepers were employed, and anyone is in Kano can see them sweeping the streets on a daily basis, that is why Kano has come cleaner than it has ever been.
“We have also entered into a partnership with local service providers in the area of waste collection in the metropolitan areas of the state, but we are interested in boosting our partnership with more local, and international business groups that might be interested in investing in the sector, to leverage the huge wealth creation opportunity there.
“At the moment Kano is generating 6000 metric tons of waste month and if you multiple this by 12 months it will give you about 96,000 metric tons of waste, this is money when the waste material is recirculated and processed” Gwarzo added.
Providing an insight into the economy of waste disposal, Abdullahi Salisu, a social entrepreneur, who is an operator of a new Start-Up known as ‘eTash 2 Cash’, involved in waste disposal, says there is a lot of money to be made in waste collection and disposal business.
Salisu, leveraging on internet tech in identifying waste collectors, who are encouraged to exchange their collection for cash, explained that the collected waste is usually sold to Waste Recirculating companies, at a premium.
The entrepreneur disclosed that he is projecting to generate $125 million from his business by 2022, through his company business model of collecting and disposing about 200,000 kilograms of trash in a sustainable waste collection system is putting in place.