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Dirty, muddy courtyards and mountains of litter on stairs and in corridors are features of many buildings in Beira. The situation now threatens public health. While some residents try to keep public spaces clean, others do just the opposite and do not bother to deal with their own filth.
A round made by our reporter shows that the problem is nearly universal across the large residential buildings in the provincial capital of Sofala, many of whose outward appearance belies the shame within.
As a general rule, household garbage – food waste, beverages bottles and cans, sanitary napkins, artificial hair, plastic bags, cardboard boxes and son on – is simply thrown from upper floors or left on the stairs where it accumulates creating a cloying environment in the buildings, where it seems everyone does whatever he or she pleases.
A complete lack of organisation between the occupants of the apartments contributes to the problem, which has worsened since the state, after deciding to dispose of nationalised properties, ceased to manage the real estate stock.
In Comité da Cidade, A Luta Continua, Tudor, Alfândegas and Emporium buildings, residents live in the midst of filth. Many simply out throw everything from plastic bags containing faeces, sewerage, bottles, sanitary towels, disposable diapers and spoiled food to burning charcoal.
“You have to pay close attention, otherwise a bag of faeces will hit you in the head,” Francisca Casse, a barmaid who works at the entrance of the Comité da Cidade building, says. “Everything is left lying around and the people who do it are not even ashamed. It costs nothing to go down and put the trash in the bin. If you stay a day or two without coming here, this whole yard is full of garbage,” she said.Source: Diário de Moçambique