Calabar, usually regarded as one of the cleanest cities in Nigeria, is now overflowing with filth.
Traders at Watt Market in Calabar have expressed concern over the heaps of refuse in the market.
The traders in separate interviews on Wednesday in Calabar, said that they are worried about the development.
They said the refuse is posing a serious health threat to traders and other residents, and can lead to possible outbreak of diseases in the market.
One of the traders, Ejike Ugorji, said that the non-evacuation of the refuse is giving the traders sleepless nights.
“It is a problem, particularly to some of us who are trading very close to the refuse bin,” he said.
He said that the traders are afraid of contracting any deadly disease through the refuse, and appealed for the immediate evacuation of the refuse to avoid the outbreak of disease in the market.
“I am appealing to the authorities to please help us clear the refuse so that we will not contract disease,” he said.
Grace Johnson, a petty trader who hawks wares very close to the refuse bin, said that the refuse was not only a hindrance to her business but also a health hazard.
“Honestly, we are dying here; for several weeks now, they have not come to clear the refuse while people are still dumping refuse every day,” she said.
The three refuse bins in the market are overflowing with garbage scattered everywhere.
Passers-by use their handkerchiefs to block their nostrils to avoid the stench oozing out of the refuse.
This is the same scenario along Mary Slessor Street, Federal Housing Estate, and Akai Street, all in Ikot Isie area where refuse is posing a serious health threat to residents.
A public servant who resides at the Federal Housing Estate, Ndoma Wilson, described the situation as very worrisome.
“This is very bad; this refuse has remained here for quite some time now and it seems nobody cares,” he said.
Meanwhile, an Official of the state Waste Management Agency, Aniefiok Bassey, said that some of their trucks are undergoing repairs.
“It is not a serious problem; it is temporary; some of our trucks are undergoing repairs and as soon as they are okay, we will evacuate the refuse,” he stated.
Mr. Bassey called for understanding from members of the public.