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Another Garbage slide kills one at Koshe


Six months after the garbage hill slide that occurred in Koshe Open Garbage Dumpsite in Addis Ababa and claimed the lives of 130 people, the site is reported to have witnessed another round of slide that claimed the life of one individual.

The incident, which happened on Thursday, took the life of Kassahun Fekade, a garbage collector, in his early 40s.

According to Addis Ababa City officials, Kassahun was working at the garbage site during the incident. Kassahun was at the site along with his friends who were working as garbage collectors.

The police are now investigating the matter, according to Negatu Mamo, public relations head of the Addis Ababa City Fire and Emergency Prevention and Rescue Agency (AFEPRG).

In the earlier Koshe tragedy, in addition to the deceased, some 592 people were reported to have been displaced from their locality. At the time, the incident had caused anger and anxiety among the public.

After the tragedy, rehabilitation efforts were made. In this respect, an estimated amount of 95 million birr was pledged to rehabilitate the families who were affected by the Koshe tragedy.  The pledge was collected from the different institutions–both public and private–individual donors as well as companies.

However, it took several months for the city officials to properly administer the assistance packages to the surrounding community.

A series of back and forth between the affected and the city officials led to an extended period of deadlock in the progress.

The city officials attributed the delay to the complexity of the conditions of the affected people referring to a strain of legal and administrative matters surrounding the eligibility of people to receive the assistance.  

The mountain of garbage and the open dumpsite which the city has been using since 1964 is said to have received over 8,500 tons of waste on a daily basis before the slide. The garbage covers close to 37 hectare of land.

Three years ago, the city has stopped to dump garbage in Koshe and relocate it to Sendafa. However, later, the city was forced to stop its plan at Sendafa after a protest from farmers who live around the Sendafa dumping area.

The farmers oppose the plan because they say the dumping area was affecting their livelihood. This action has then forced the city to resume the dumping of garbage at Koshe.

This action was taken by the city despite the fact that Koshe was almost overwhelmed by the mountain of solid waste.