As Tšosane dumping site continues to burn
The fire which erupted at the Tšosane dumping site has cost a local businessman thousands of Maluti in damages.
This resurfaced before the Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee on Tuesday where Jeremaea Mokhothu told the committee that some of his assets along with scrap cars he was meant to fix all burnt to ashes following the fire that has been burning non-stop at the dump site.
“It has been two months now since the fire erupted and we have attempted to protest on the prolonged mismanagement of the dump site by the Maseru City Council. To date the fire is still burning one way yet rubbish depositing has also not stopped. Apart from health hazards that the fire poses to the residents of Ha Tšosane, there is also private property that was property damaged after catching fire from the burning rubbish. I am one of the affected people. My electrical appliances and scrap cars which were awaiting maintenance at my place caught fire regardless of the efforts we have made. The MCC has shown no interest,” Mokhothu pointed out.
“Fixing cars is my only source of income, and it has been affected causing me to incur unnecessary expenses,” Mokhothu said.
Mokhothu further indicated that the MCC promised to send mobile clinics to Ha Tšosane to examine health conditions of people living around the dumping site, but he has not seen ‘even one mobile clinic up to date.’
Responding to Mokhothu’s plight, Motseki Khuto, Director in the Environmental Health Office of the MCC, indicated that Mokhothu is not being honest on the issue of mobile clinics.
“From what I know and feel is that Mokhothu does not want to talk about the fact the mobile clinics sometimes are dispatched to Ha Tšosane though it is not every day, but we are working on that and there should be at least a mobile clinic every day for better health for the people of Ha Tšosane.
“For now, we have been trying to stop the fire by using soil because it seems to be more helpful than water. On the issue that we are still pilling rubbish on top of the burning one, that is not true, we look for a place around the dump site where there is no fire right now, and deposit new rubbish there, and after that we put soil on top of it to prevent it from catching fire,” Khuto explained.
He further indicated that due to limited resources, the fire would not stop as soon as they would wish it to.
“The fact that our machinery is broken down and were using a borrowed the machine from Mafeteng which was returned, we are unable to anticipate just how soon the fire will be put out. We are still trying other mechanisms,” he said.
He indicated that the Council urged affected people to write letters to MCC outlining what they have lost in the event of the fire.
“We urged people who are affected including Mokhothu to write letters of complaints to MCC so that their issue will be looked into and compensation methods agreed upon,” Khuto said.
Meanwhile, the Principal Secretary with the Local Government Ministry, Khothatso Tsoana said while Ha Tšosane issue is been looked into, the MCC and the ministry are still in the procurement process to acquire a specialist on issues of environment.
“The ministry is in the process of finding specialist that will stop the fire and very soon there will be a solution,” he revealed.