Honiara, in recent times, has been labeled as one of the dirtiest capital cities in the Pacific region, such label does little to help the ever fledging tourism sector that so desperately needs an image boost.In most street corners in Honiara one will encounter a heap of rubbish. The worst is the Mataniko River people use the river as a rubbish disposal area. The fact that it is in the middle of town makes it an eyesore.
Honiara residents have time and again questioned why responsible authorities are doing little to fix this problem.
Joseph Huta, the Honiara City Council Clerk, speaking to Solomon Times said that "it is a sad picture to see rubbish lying everywhere on the streets and in our rivers..."
"We are planning more clean up days...one will be before the 30th anniversary but the official date for the clean up will be made known after the council, together with the law enforcement and the health division hold a meeting some times next week," said Mr. Huta.
Mr. Huta said that they have tried to impose rules and litter by-laws but it has been quite difficult particularly when there is little co-operation from other stakeholders.
Mr. Huta said that despite the lack of cooperation by other stakeholders, concerted effort will go into ensuring that the by-laws are enforced. "We, all residents of Honiara, are responsible to keep this town clean, we can only do so much with our limited resources," Mr. Huta said.
As the government continues to promote tourism as the way of the future, many local commentators are saying that the government should fix the basics; a clean capital city would be a good start.