LWMC taking over SWM today

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The administrative and operational powers of City District Government Lahore (CDGL) Solid Waste Management (SWM) department, which has been controlling the sanitation system since the devolution plan, will be handed over to Lahore Waste Management Company (LWMC) on Friday (today), Pakistan Today has learnt.
The taking over ceremony will be held at Town Hall and DCO Ahmed Cheema and LWMC MD Waseem Ajmal will ink a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in this regard. After the accord, SWM’s machinery, workshops and staff would be handed over to LWMC on a 20-year lease. The control of around 10,000 employees will be handed over to the company for 20 years.
SWM DO (Planning) Rafiq Jattoi told Pakistan Today that CDGL would transfer all operational assets of SWM to LWMC. However, he said that SWM department would not be completely dysfunctional. “District officer of SWM and some employees would stay to execute legal part of the department and would have power to issue legal notices in case of violation,” he added.
CDGL established LWMC under section 42 of the companies ordinance 1984 for providing sustainable, efficient and improved waste management system services in June last year.
The company’s board of directors include DCO, EDO (Finance & Planning Lahore), Urban Unit Project Director (DMG officer), Additional Secretary (local bodies) and a member of Lahore Chamber of Commerce Lahore.
LWMC MD Waseem Ajmal said that LWMC would focus on digitalizing waste disposal, increasing landfill sites, using composting as a sustainable waste disposal method, establishing a marketing strategy for the compost, plastic waste collection and treatment, waste statistics research and on reducing the volume of waste for landfills.
A senior official said that LWMC had replaced the proposed privatization of SWM. He said that four private companies including two foreign companies were interested in the privatization plan but they pulled them out of the multi-million project owing to law and order situation. He said that CDGL extended the time thrice for these companies to submit their final proposals to finalize the plan but they kept using delaying tactics. As a last resort, SWM bigwigs summoned a joint meeting with them in October, 2009. However, the companies did not show up on the occasion.
Private companies of France and China along with two local companies, including Waste Busters, were engaged in the privatization plan.
According to a CDGL official the city was generating around 9,000 tons of waste per day. “Waste generation per capita ranges 0.5 to 0.65 kg/day, higher than other cities except Multan and DG Khan. Ravi Town, in nine towns in Lahore, has the highest rate of waste generation,” he said. SWM had the capacity to deal with only 5,000 tons of waste while the remaining 4,000 tons of waste remained laying in open spaces, he said.