Solid waste is any discarded material generated from houses, resturants, places of business (including industries), animal and vegetable matter, waste papers, cans, glasses, etc, (excluding sludge or waste water ).
To maintain good health and environmental sanitation, it is very important that collection, removal, and disposal of refuse (waste) within a community is carried out in a sanitary manner. Certain organization, and systems have been established to carry out the duties of collecting, removing and disposing of all refuse within a particular location, they may be private firms or government organizations. But if these systems fail to carry out their responsibilities, it would have negative impacts on the environment and health of humans as a whole, it could start a disease cycle. For instance increased breeding of infected rats which are causative agents of Lassa fever.
Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) has a major dumping site located in between RMO 5 and Cooperative student hostel, waste from all over LUTH (the hospital, staff and students residential arears) is transported to that site. The incinerator was built about 2 years ago to collect and store waste temporarily before they are transported to their permanent site and it has been constantly and consistently cleared daily with the exception of Saturdays and Sundays by a certain waste management system (unknown), and this has sufficiently kept the incinerator clean but with overflows of waste to the road during the weekends, and when it rains it becomes an eyesore because some of the refuse is carried away by water and is being spread everywhere within that location to an extent that it makes it difficult for people to walk that path with the distribution of refuse everywhere including hospital waste(used syringes, used gloves, blood stained cotton swabs, sample bottles), due to fear of needle prick injuries, and contacts with highly contaminated waste.
This has become very frequent especially during the rainy season, the very unhygienic environment which is located almost in front of the student hostel, the unpleasant odor that pollutes the air, the conducive breeding site of giant rats, mosquitoes and houseflies, and erosion of refuse by rain right in front of the hostels.Most times it’s like when the students come out of their hostel, they walk right on the refuse decorated ground into the dumping site! Sometimes outsiders come behind the incinerator to defecate; this worsens the smell of that area
However, it has been observed that since the 14th of June 2018(right before the Salah break), the incinerator had not been cleared for some unknown reasons. This has made the situation around that environment much worse than it usually is during the weekdays and weekends, and with the continuous rain falls in Lagos, it has become unbearable! No thanks to the poor drainage system and the stagnant waters in the potholes of the bad roads, There is no road to walk through!. The environment is an unpleasant site. Apart from the negative environmental impacts this is having on that location, it is important to point out that this occurrence poses a threat to human health and could also lead to beoutbreak of diseases (Lassa fever, Cholera, Hepatitis B and other diseases associated with poor environmental hygiene)
This article is not written to fault anybody or any organization, but to point out the state of the dumping site to all the residents of LUTH, the environmental hazards as well as the health risk it poses to the students and staff. This article is written as a cry for help to as many individuals and organization that would join hands to save our environment and to prevent the disease cycle from occurring by making suitable refuse disposal sites that will not pose a threat to the environment and to the health of the people.