The Oyo State Government on Tuesday warned traders in the 62 markets in Ibadan to imbibe the culture of proper refuse disposal forthwith or face the wrath of the law when caught.
Mr Kehinde Ayoola, the State Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, gave the warning at a stakeholders meeting with leaders of associations in the markets.
Ayoola said the meeting was to fashion out ways to curb the menace of indiscriminate waste dumping in Ibadan markets and road medians across the state capital.
He stressed that the Seyi Makinde administration would not tolerate indiscriminate dumping of refuse.
The commissioner urged the traders to support government in its efforts at making every nook and cranny of the city free of refuse.
Ayoola directed the traders to take a decision on how the refuse being generated in their markets would be disposed off.
Also speaking, Mr Seun Adelore, Chairman of the Waste Management Board, expressed concern over the perception of the public that Ibadan was the dirtiest city in Africa, saying the present government was committed to changing the narrative.
Adelore charged the market leaders to brace up and work with government in achieving its goal of proper waste management.
He disclosed that government would soon distribute special nylon packs to traders to keep their refuse pending arrival of refuse collectors who would operate on daily basis in the markets.
Mr Fatai Owoseni, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Security as well as Chairman of the Taskforce on Waste Management, noted that poor waste management was inimical to adequate security.
Owoseni said that criminals could hide guns or other weapons inside heaps of waste for use at night.
He directed leaders of Community Development Associations to appoint Environmental Marshals in their respective communities to check indiscriminate disposal of refuse.
In her response on behalf of the traders, Mrs Hamdalat Lawal- Iyadunni, the Iyaloja of Gbagi market, commended the state government for declaring state of emergency on refuse collection and waste management in the state.
Iyadunni promised that traders in every market in Ibadan would support the steps taken by government to address the menace of poor waste management.