The Mayor of Makeni city Her Worship, Sunkarie Kabba Kamara has told the people of her municipality that the significance of cleanliness and hygiene cannot be overlooked by any society, pointing out that every faith and civilization stresses the importance of cleanliness.
Her Worship, Sunkarie Kabba Kamara made this statement when addressing market women at the Sesay street market during her tour around the municipality to monitor the Saturday cleaning exercise.
The Mayor disclosed that historically, cleanliness has been considered one of the important factors by which to judge a civilization, or society’s development, noting that even for example Islam places great emphasis on cleanliness and purity, both physically and spiritually. More importantly, she said, cleanliness is termed as an indispensable fundamental of faith.
However, the Mayor maintained that this fundamental and powerful tenet of our faith, unfortunately, is not reflected in our society practically. Serious reflection is required on our individual as well as collective practices in order to make this valuable principle of both Islam and Christianity part of our lives she added.
Her Worship the Mayor lamented that the throwing of garbage in the streets, roads or parks has become a common practice in our society. In public places dustbins are seldom found. Even if dustbins are installed, people do not use them properly. Rather, they prefer to throw garbage outside them. She also observed that people clean their homes and shops and throw the garbage on the street without considering its implications. It is evident that even students of elite schools including St. Francis Secondary School throw garbage on the ground even in the presence of garbage bins.
“This shows our attitude towards cleanliness and hygiene” she observed.
The Mayor of Makeni City noted that another area that needs consideration is the horrible condition of public toilets. The shortage of public toilets is a big challenge, she said hence people are compelled to use open spaces to answer the call of nature.
Mayor Sunkarie Kabba Kamara opined that conscious efforts are needed to tackle this issue. There is a dire need to educate and sensitise people about the importance of cleanliness she said. In this regard the Mayor reechoed that social institutions such as educational institutions, the media and religious institutions can play a vital role.
It is essential to provide civic education in order to train the younger generations of our municipality the Mayor added.
In Makeni City and her environs, the Mayor suggested that the education system needs to transform its practices noting that teaching and learning material regarding cleanliness and hygiene should be included in the curriculum and textbooks. Educational institutions should demonstrate cleanliness in their premises. To train young people, schools should involve students in cleaning their schools, homes and environment and highlight proper sanitary practices. The use of dustbins should be strictly followed in the school premises, she said.
The Makeni City Council she said will use the media as a powerful source to educate and sensitize the masses about the importance of cleanliness and disadvantages of an unhygienic way of life. It should focus on both the good as well as unhygienic practices in our society.
The Mayor said the commitment of the government and the local council cannot be overlooked in maintaining cleanliness and hygiene in the municipality. The Makeni City Council will play an important role in cleaning areas, installing dustbins, collecting garbage and enforcing laws against littering etc.
The importance of cleanliness the Mayor noted cannot be ignored in individual as well as communal life. On one hand she said, it is an important factor for human health and spiritual development; on the other hand it is essential for environmental development.
By adopting a clean and hygienic lifestyle, a valuable amount can also be saved where health issues are concerned. A clean and healthy life helps in refining the culture of a society and reflects in every aspect of life such as art, architecture, food, music and so on. Ultimately, it leads towards a higher level of civilization the Mayor concluded.