Kisoro Municipal council is likely to fix a garbage tax of 100 shillings on each Kilogram of garbage generated by people living in Kisoro town as one way of regulating filth in the town.
The matter was raised before the municipal councilors for debate on Monday 9th August 2021 by the Kisoro Municipality Treasurer, Rutungana Benon, during the second council meeting for the newly elected municipal councilors.
According to Rutangana, a study was made through touring other municipalities in Uganda including Mbarara City, where it was discovered that garbage control has been successful through taxing garbage generators.
Rutangana says that many people in the Municipality have resorted to hiring Batwa and other casual labourers to dispose off their garbage. He says that unfortunately, these end up littering the garbage all over the town, in different areas.
He notes that a questionnaire was made in which many municipal residents supported the idea of taxation.
“From the study we made, garbage accumulation in Kisoro town can adequately be regulated through taxing garbage generators. I stand to ask this honorable council to consider this move because we also made a questionnaire and people supported it,” Rutangana said.
The Kisoro Municipal Town Clerk, Sharifah Nakintu explained more by saying that each kilogram of garbage will be charged with 100 shillings and that the money collected would be used to facilitate garbage management at the official municipal dumping site, the contractor and the dumping trucks.
“We all know that the divisions almost do nothing apart from managing garbage which has made it difficult for them to reserve allowances for cleaners, a reason to why they always strike. That’s why we made that proposal and garbage will be charged per Kilogram with a Kilogram rated at 100 shillings.”
However, Municipal councilors were divided in their debate with a few seconding the cause while others opposed.
The Nyagashinge Ward Councilor, Tumwizere Micheal together with his counterpart representing the elderly, Musabyimana Erastus, seconded the motion. They argued that this will help to control reckless dumping in the town that has left a lot of garbage in the wrong place.
The Kisoro Municipal deputy speaker, Hashakimana Joachim and the Nyamagana ward woman councilor opposed the motion, saying that the garbage tax is an added problem to Municipal residents during this covid-19 period. They proposed that people be adequately sensitized on how to manage garbage but not taxing them.
The Municipal speaker, Nkurunziza Geoffrey deferred the mattered to sectoral committees for further scrutiny, after which a recommendation will be made in the next council sitting.
Kisoro Municipality has battled garbage for several years which has caused criticism from many district leaders including the Kisoro district chairperson Abel Bizimana, the District Chief Administrative Officer Onzu Ismail Musa and other politicians.
In June 2021, the Nyakabande LC3 Chairman, Ntawera Funi recently threatened to sue Kisoro Municipal authorities over uncontrolled garbage that has always been dumped into his Sub County by running waters.