More than 40 private garbage collectors have been barred from operating in the Nairobi central business district (CBD) as the county government moves to enforce what it called operating standards.
This has left hundreds of customers without the essential services, having paid in advance. They will now be forced to engage the remaining eight collectors or a company sub-contracted by City Hall to provide sweeping and garbage collection services in the CBD.
Creative Consolidated was issued with the contract for the city centre sanitation starting March 1.
Before the new move, there were 56 private companies in the CBD.
County director for environment Leah Oyake-Ombis said some of the trucks used to collect garbage were too old or small while others had few clients. The county set a minimum clientele of 100 for each private collector.
“We decided to standardise the type of vehicles and the minimum clientele that a private waste collector needs to have to continue providing these services in the CBD.
“So we came up with operation standards. We need closed vehicles with a minimum capacity of 10 tonnes. We also said they have to be branded with the company logo so that if you do illegal dumping we can easily trace you. They have to provide their clients with liner bags, which are branded with their names and logos to curb illegal dumping,” she said.
Dr Ombis was speaking during the release of 11 new garbage trucks by the county government, part of 31 trucks procured recently at Sh256 million. The remaining 20 are set to be delivered by April.
Also procured are six tractor shovels to load the tipper trucks, 19 side-loaders and six skip trucks to transport waste containers to be placed in markets.
Nairobi produces 2,000 tonnes of solid waste daily. City Hall expects 65 per cent of this to be hauled to the Dandora dumpsite by end of April once the entire fleet is in place.
The 44 trucks are expected to haul 800 tonnes of garbage daily while private companies will carry 200 tonnes. Creative Consolidated will transport 250 tonnes daily.
Dr Ombis said the new haulage capacity will allow City Hall to compete with private collectors in the estates.
For domestic waste, households pay the county Sh100 per tonne per month while commercial enterprises pay Sh300, according to the Nairobi County Finance Act.
“The next business that we are giving to our division and sub-county supervisors of environment is going around and creating a database of those clients who would want to subscribe to our collection system,” she said.
Governor Evans Kidero said the county is set to launch colour-coded bins in sets of three to ensure that recyclable and non-recyclable garbage is sorted at the source.
The project will cost Sh200 million. Garbage collection remains a key benchmark that Nairobi residents continue to use as measure of the effectiveness of Mr Kidero administration.