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Group inaugurates plastic recycling hub in Gwagwalada

The Initiative for the Advancement of Waste Management in Africa (W.A.S.T.E. AFRICA), an NGO, on Saturday, April 27, 2024, inaugurated a “Waste-to-Wealth” plastic recycling hub in Gwagwalada Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Recycling hub
The recycling hub

The facility is expected to curb indiscriminate dumping of refuse and also to empower residents.

Ms Juliet Odhikori, the Programmes Director of the group, in a remark, said that the project was supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Global Environment Facilities (GEF), and the Small Grant Programme (SGP).

Odhikori said the essence of the hub was to promote waste as a valuable currency for social good, economic empowerment, inclusion and environmental hygiene.

“We are carrying out this project called reducing marine plastic pollution, through recycling, to reduce plastic pollution from our local communities.

“Indiscriminate dumping ping of these materials has been identified as the leakage point where plastics enter into the marine bodies and cause pollution and blockages.

“The project is also to encourage people in local communities to start recycling and to empower, especially women, through monetising environmental waste,” she said.

She said that the hub would be opened from Monday to Saturday, adding that residents within and around the community are encouraged to walk-in with their “recyclable” materials for scaling, drop-offs and collection of rewards.

She thanked the Gwagwalada environmental board for supporting the project and called for more support to sustain and expand the project beyond the area council, and also beyond the FCT.

Mr Isha Attahiru, Representative of the Director of Environmental Services Department of the area council, lauded the group’s initiative to create a money-making venture for residents through recycling and waste management.

“This programme will be helpful to our community directly, because as the raining season is approaching, most of this plastic ends up in our water ways, blocking the flow and increasing the risks of flooding.

“But, with this programme, the amount of plastic refuse will be drastically reduced, and the waterway will have uninterrupted flow,” he said.

He applauded the NGO for the youth and women engagement and empowerment and pledged continued support through sensitisation and mobilisation of waste pickers.

Mr Billal Zakari, the Representative of the Chief of Gwako Community, also commended the group for creating a source of income for residents in the community.

According to him, the women and youths are now engaged with waste picking for monetary rewards that will meet their needs and also keep the environment clean.

The women and youths in the community expressed excitement over the idea of making money through waste picking and recycling.

By Diana Omueza

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