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Mar 14, 2011, 11:20 AM
Side By Side Organization, in collaboration with the National Environment Agency (NEA) and Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC), on Sunday embarked on a massive cleansing exercise at Sandika market in Serrekunda.
The organization, formerly called United Youths Association (UYA) now Side By Side Organization (SBSO), has been in existence since 2005 with the aim of empowering youths through three keen areas of development, namely education, health and environmental protection.
In his statement at the exercise, Ablie Jarju, senior supervisor at the KMC, said that when his boss informed him about the organization’s intention to clean Sandika, he felt so pleased about it.
He said further that the problem they are facing after cleaning Sandika is that people living around the area “will come there at night and dump rubbish which will transform into a big heap before morning”.
“People should change their attitude since KMC has done their part which is to sensitize us,” he added.
In his remarks on the occasion, Hatab Fadera, chairperson of Side By Side Organization, said that for them to achieve their goal in health and environment they decided to embark on a cleansing exercise.
“Partnering with KMC is very important,” Mr Fadera said, adding that both parties can help each other in complementing their efforts.
For his part, Yankuba Senghore, Admin officer of the organization, said: “Sandika is a place where we get our foodstuff and if the food is contaminated and at the same time consumed by the population it will bring health hazard to us.”
He also said they were very disappointed with the vendors in the area because they expected them to join them in cleaning the place but instead everyone was busy going ahead with their business.
Abou Suffiana Bah, social secretary of Side by Side, said he is very proud to be part of such an initiative saying this is what is expected from a good citizen and “cleaning a place such as Sandika is a move in the right direction.
“There is need for attitudinal change and that people have to learn to take ownership of their environment,” he said, adding that the vendors should not wait for the KMC to come and do it for them since “they are the very ones who suffer the consequences”.