Tonye Princewill: Waste Disposal And Job Creation

By Nwaorgu Faustinus
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The issue of waste disposal is one of the challenges staring the Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi led-administration in the face he assumed mantle of leadership in Rivers State. With the ever increasing number of people coming to settle in urban areas, Port Harcourt, the capital of Rivers State being no exception, there has been attendant waste generation especially domestic waste among others which has continued to dot every nook and cranny of the state capital unabated in the form of “refuse dumps”

Though the state government has tried its best to ensure these gory sights are nipped in the bud by delayed or prompt disposal of refuse in some places a lot still need to be done. Having good knowledge of the above state of affairs: the challenge of waste disposal, and the saying that cleanliness is next to godliness, the prince of Niger/Delta politics has stood up to be counted. You may ask how.

As an investment consultant to the Rivers State government and ardent believer in the Rivers State Public Private Partnership initiative (PPP), Tonye Princewill has effortlessly been at the forefront of attracting investors to the state. In his search for investors late last year, luck smiled on him as he brought on board Albayrak Group Turkey, a world famous conglomerate with Head Office in Istanbul. Writing on this, Chief Chukwuemeka Eze said, “His (Princewill's) search for a workable model of urban waste disposal for the city of Port Harcourt and its environs saw him undertaking studies that had him visiting major cities within and outside Africa before his decision to settle with the Albayrak Group Turkey, a world renowned conglomerate with Head Office situated in Istanbul”.

One good thing about Albayrak's waste management and disposal pilot scheme was the conglomerate's resolve to provide it free-of-charge to the Rivers State government. In addition, no form of contractual agreement was entered into with the state government in the freight and clearing of more than ten waste trucks and no less than 160 large waste disposal bins among other equipment. According to Chief C. Eze late last year, “the cost of the pilot phase that is scheduled to be carried out in the over a period of 1 month will also be written off by them. The Group is optimistic that at the end of the exercise an assessment that would hopefully lead to its engagement as official waste managers of the State would be carried out”.

What more? It is therefore important to note that the pilot scheme has ended on a commendable note, with the state government confirming truly that the proof of the pudding is in the eating. To this end therefore, the Rivers state government has finally given the conglomerate a node to officially commence its waste management and disposal function last month. This brain child of Prince Tonye Princewill has commendably engaged or rather created job for over 500 persons who participate in keeping Rivers State clean.

From all in indications, the Action Congress Leader in Rivers State, Prince Tonye Princewill has finally put into practice the famous quote of John F. Kennedy which says, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country. However, he is doing it for his state this time around and its people.

The above quote has in no small measure justified Princewill's words last year November as he said, “I don't like to sit down and wait for Government to do everything for me. Government is me and I am government. Why can't we help Government to help us? Without any financial conditions, we went and found a solution to a problem I knew the Governor had because I could. What can I say? He brings out the best in me. Rivers state today is moving forward in leaps and bounds because some people are saying enough is enough to personal or party political interest. We must move forward. Today I am proud to say and demonstrate once more, that I am one of those people.”

Other like mind individuals, God in his infinite mercy has blessed should not wait to be called upon to participate in Rivers State PPP especially in the area of waste management and disposal as there is still lot to be done.

Nwaorgu Faustinus, Socio-political commentator writes from Igboetche, Rivers State