Scraps: Recycling Waste to Wealth, a Deep-dive Into Hasken Matasa’s Perspective

Waste to Wealth

Scraps: Recycling Waste to Wealth, a Deep-dive Into Hasken Matasa’s Perspective

AREWA AGENDA – As the world struggles to manage its waste, Hasken Matasa Radio programme takes a deep dive into how this can turn to wealth for many.

Recycling of scraps and other house wastes is a business that has thrived for long. Soil degradation resulting in flooding and debris on soil preventing proper agricultural practices erupting from improper scrap disposal would make the business now, more than ever a very important one.

In its 50th episode themed: “Scrap business; what is it and its impact on youth and school children.,” Hasken Matasa looks at the pros and cons of the business.

Malam Abdulazeez Muhammed Kaura and Mustapha Sa’id Kano give an insight on scrap business, dishing out prospects, potential and solutions on how to remove inherent bottlenecks in the business.

Speaking at the live programme, Malam Abdulazeez recall that scrap business has been in existence as far back as he can remember, and the business generally involves picking up scraps, polythenes, plastic bottles and other used materials which are, sold to interested individuals or industries. They in turn recycle these scraps to useful products.

According to Abdulazeez, the business is of economic importance in the sense that there are ample benefits as much as there are downsides.

“Scrape business has resulted in springing up of recycling industries, created job opportunities or employment for youths, generation of revenue for the government, source of raw materials for industries, production of locally made materials like plastic buckets and in some cases serves as a source of foreign exchange.

“Despite the benefits attached to the business, a good number of social vices has also sprung as a result, especially with underaged children involved, some are: drug abuse and addiction, theft, raping, truancy and alcoholism among others.”

For some level of sanity to come into the business and make it thrive as we see in other countries, Abdulazeez said the government has a significant role to play.

“For sanity to return to scrap business so that it can flourish, the government at all levels has to create a regulatory agency for the business, which will be saddled with the responsibility of businesspersons, a ban should be placed on underaged, school monitoring committee should be set up to move around neighborhoods because of pupils or students playing traunt, provide a designated market place (and maybe call it Scrap Village) for the business instead of different spots scattered across town, and where necessary make successful owners of such businesses obtain a certificate from Cooperate Affairs Commission (CAC).”

Also speaking, Mustapha Sa’id Kano on his part, said, the business is lucrative but a lot of people picture it as menial and refuse to get involved because 75% of those involved are uneducated or school dropouts and about 50% end up becoming thieves, preying on the properties of others in the name of ‘Scrap business’.

To purify the prospective but contaminated business, Mustapha is of the opinion that community has higher stake in ensuring that it works much than the government does at any level.

“Instead of always waiting on the government, communities should take it upon themselves to address their problems and run to the authority when and only if things fall of their jurisdiction, children should be banned until at least after acquiring the basic first school leaving certificate, and if they must be a part of the business before that, they should do so only after school hours, security and law enforcement agencies should also be at alert in monitoring the scraps picked; ofcourse this will be feasible if there is a designated market place, while buyers ensure they do not buy stolen goods,” Mustapha enunciated.

On a final note, the guests suggested that the power and glory of traditional ruler be restored because it will go a long way in betterment of scrap business especially at grassroot level and tackle stealing that is mostly associated with it.

Many big gutters in Nigeriia’s big cities are filled up with filths; floating cans, nylon water sachets, empty bottles and other waste materials discarded by humans, swept there by rain, gathering and clogging up the drain.

This is not only a Nigerian problem, it is a global challenge as the world continues to writhe under the burden of waste management.

In 2019, the Global Material Footprint (the amount of raw material including fossil fuels, biomass and metal and non-metal ore, extracted to meet total consumption demand), according to the United Nations, was 85.9 billion tonnes – up from 73.2 billion tonnes 10 years before. Meanwhile, the world’s electronics waste – namely discarded smartphones, tablets and other electronic devices – grew by 38 percent in that same year.

Hasken Matasa, which literally translates into “Light of the Youths”, is a weekly programme on topical youth-oriented issues organised by the Community Health and Research Initiative (CHR) and the Youth Society for Prevention of Infectious Diseases and Social Vices (YOSPIS), is sponsored by the Aminu Magashi Garba Foundation (AMG Foundation).

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