(MENAFN - Arab News) The Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs has signed nine contracts worth SR 1.8 billion with various companies to undertake cleaning operations in the Jeddah Municipality.
"The nine companies will start working in two months. The municipality is currently preparing detailed schedules and other details to be followed by each company," spokesman for the municipality, Abdul Aziz Al-Nehari, told Arab News yesterday.
The contract period is five years.
"The entire city has been divided into nine areas and each company will undertake the full cleaning of one or two areas," Al-Nehari said, adding that in the past, only three companies were entrusted with the cleaning of the whole city.
It is because of the growth of the city in terms of population and in the number of residential neighborhoods that more companies were contracted, he said.
Another company has been appointed to monitor and evaluate the work of the nine companies. This company will send daily and periodic reports about the performance of the cleaning companies to the city mayor, he said.
He added that a huge volume of garbage has been produced everyday in the city, mostly food and other garbage from residential houses. The three companies currently operating in the city are struggling hard to clean the huge volume of waste produced, he said.
"The volume of garbage produced in the city is continuously growing because its population is growing fast and translating into an increase in the number of streets and districts in the city," the official said.
The city's rapid growth is a challenge to the municipality to keep the city environmentally clean and safe, the official added.
"However, the municipality must tackle the challenge in such a manner that the level of cleanliness in the city is maintained at 100 percent always," he said.
The city has witnessed a qualitative shift in the techniques of cleaning, he said.
Discarded garbage at spots other than garbage bins is noticeable at many locations. "But this practice is found in many other countries including advanced countries. A sense of cleanliness is related to the culture of the people," the official said. He also urged people not to throw garbage from their cars onto the street.
"We must put all of our garbage in the municipal trash bins that can be found everywhere. If the bins are full, the waste should be put close to it without littering so that we can keep our city clean always," he said adding that it is the responsibility of the residents to help the municipality keep their neighborhoods clean.