CLI: Visionscape transiting waste management into next global phase in Lagos soon — Irvine, Visionscape’s CEO
Recently, Lagos metropolis, in an unprecedented situation, had been inundated with refuse heaps thereby posing serious health hazards to over 23 million residents. The trend was, however, attributed to the unforeseen challenges in the transition period of the state government in waste management policy, called, Cleaner Lagos initiative, CLI.
To pilot the scheme, a new waste management company, Visionscape Sanitation Solutions, was contracted by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode led administration. The company, recently, received a consignment of brand new 100 vehicles into waste management fleet embedded with cutting-edge technology. The shipment consists of a series of waste trucks, from various rear end loaders to operational vehicles. The company has begun operations across the state, rolling out the next phase of contract for CLI.
The Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Visionscape, Mr. John Irvine, spoke with Olasunkanmi Akoni during an interview with Vanguard on the activities of the company and how to tackle heaps of refuse in the state, held at Alausa, Ikeja office. Excerpts:
Mission in Lagos
Visionscape is a global utility company, what we mean by utility is that we do not deal solely in waste, but also waste water.
We are in Lagos because we officially applied for an international tender that was placed by the state government to seek for an agency that would address residential waste collection in the state over a fixed contract term. With our business model, we believe that we can deliver significant benefit to the state. That was why we submitted our bid and after several rounds of negotiation on the terms and conditions, we were awarded the contract by the state government to be the major collector of residential waste in Lagos.
To kick-start the contract, which is indifferent stages, we spent the first 18 months on mobilisation of different segments of the contract. The first segment was initial mobilisation, which entails the surveying; the second stage is stabilisation, while the third is augmentation. Each of the segments takes between three and four months before full services are realised.
Resurgence of refuse in Lagos
The resurgence of refuse in Lagos was due to what we call the “Force-cycle.” It means, when the public service provider, government, and the Private Sector Participants, PSP, hand over to private contractor, which is Visionscape. We are the first private company to commit itself to something that was previously managed by the government. The difference between us and the PSP operators is that Visionscape is larger than the PSP operators. That was why we had the issue of refuse across the state then.
Presently, we are moving into the stabilisation stage. This is because for about five or six months, we have been out there completing the mobilisation exercise. In the next four or five months, we should start bringing in other equipment in stages.
The last months gave us the ability to stabilise our contractual requirement to the government, meaning, meeting the terms and conditions of the contract. After that, we are moving into the augmentation stage, which will elapse between five and six months after the expiration of the present stage. It will enhance the contract and we will see more vehicles on the road and more men working within this period. I cannot have 600 vehicles here today because I cannot train the personnel that will handle the vehicles simultaneously. This is the reason we have decided to embark on it in stages.
We understand that about 86 persons come into the state every hour. We have done our feasibility study to ensure that the challenges are tackled. This is not about managing the waste alone but also educating and implementing strategies to reduce waste generation during the cause of our contract.
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