Lagos has come a long way, almost full circle, from an extremely filthy state, where it isn’t common place to drive past a corpse dumped on the road, to many who use its streets as their very own lavatories and for us all it became endemically our free for all dustbin.
After a meal, a drink, just throw it out the window, that is the norm, so easy to dispose of waste, by simply throwing it out on the streets; As a pedestrian, ensure you turn away from the man squatting, while he takes a shit in the streets, early in the morning or late at night, when you walk the streets.
Street sweepers and Refuse Disposal trucks? What are those?
We were dwellers in our filth; we embraced our squalor and reveled in it.
Then we had a Governor, Raji Fashola and his Eko Oni Baje mantra, like blind men who saw the light for the first time, we began to turn our noses up at our own filth; Street sweepers became common place; while we shopped at the market, we never forgot to buy the fancy waste bags for our refuse disposal – how bourgeois to take it out, neatly fastened to be disposed off by Lawma on refuse collection day.
We hung our heads in shame if we threw things out the window, because we encountered the looks of judgement from other passersby; the clean streets also judged us if we strayed from the narrow path of immaculacy.
Alas! we are right back where we started, to an even filthier Lagos, it would seem Gov.Raji Fashola took with him our desire to stay clean, to avoid litter and filth. Lagos becomes as a child who is unable to bath himself, when daddy isn’t home.
Where are the street sweepers and LAWMA trucks? we notice their absence. Where are the pristine streets we have become so used to. Everywhere we turn are frightening mounds of feculence, it would seem the dirt is winning,Lagos changes from ‘Eko Oni Baje’ to ‘Eko Oti Baje’ .
It is indeed a sad state of affairs.
Photo Credit: Yusuf Busari and Chidinma Okere