Melcom Ghana Limited, one of the largest retail shops in the country, has begun the replacement of all non-degradable carrier bags with oxo-biodegradable ones.
According to the Director of Communications of the company, Mr Godwin Avenorgbo, the move formed part of an effort by the company to address
the current sanitation issues facing the country.
Oxo-biodegradable plastic, often referred to as “degradable” plastic, contains additives to help them degrade into smaller pieces
more quickly with the help of heat or light.
Such type of plastics take three to six months to decompose fully.
That’s much quicker than their synthetic counterparts that take several hundred years.
At present, the use of plastics has become a canker such that president John Dramani Mahama, in July 2015, warned that Ghana might go the
‘Rwanda way’ by banning the use of plastics if producers failed to properly manage plastic waste.
“It has become such a pernicious pollutant. If producers of plastics don’t do something about it, then we may have to go the Rwanda way. In Rwanda,
plastics are banned nobody uses plastics and yet they are surviving,” he said.
Following this, the government in December 2015 gave plastic producers a six-month lifeline to help fix the country’s poor sanitation challenges or be slapped with a fresh ban on light plastics.
The ban, which should have come into effect in November 2015, was suspended following a petition from the producers.
The producers say another government directive for them to make all plastics bio-degradable makes the ban on light plastics unnecessary.
But Environment Minister Mahama Ayariga said the government was convinced that the two directives would check the filth in cities across the
Sponsor clean-up campaigns
Mr Avenorgbor who was speaking at a ceremony to present some educational items to the Have Technical Institute in the Volta Region and the Holy Child School in the Central Region, said the company would also sponsor clean-up campaigns to keep the environment healthy and safe particularly at “this time that the rains will start pouring down and their flow impeded by rubber and garbage-choked gutters”.
He, therefore, urged customers and the general public to embrace the new concept by the company while ensuring that they kept their environment
clean at all times and adhered to the sanitation laws.
Have Technical Institute received two gas burners and two gas cylinders to enable the school authorities to start their catering programme without delay.
Holy Child School also received one each of Akai rechargeable fan and optima two-face fan and two Akai steam irons to support its upcoming staff awards.
Mr Avenorgbor also mentioned that the company had also attained its objective of operating the largest warehouse in west Africa and “our Free Zones Warehouse is fully operational.”
The Principal of Have Technical Institute, Mr Leonard Ashun, lauded Melcom Ghana Limited for the support and pledged to use the items for the benefit of the students.