CORFU. Outgoing mayor Kostas Lessis has written to the government.
South Corfu is now full of uncollected rubbish. The situation, both on the main road and within the villages, is tragic, with rubbish bags flooding the disposal points inside and outside the bins, bringing back the waste nightmare of the recent past to the area.
The outgoing Mayor, Kostas Lessis, has formally informed the government about the serious issue that has arisen in the recent period regarding waste management in South Corfu. The letters were sent to the office of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, to the Minister of Environment and Energy, Th. Skylakakis, to the Secretary General M. Grafakos, and to the Ministry of Civil Protection, with a copy to the Prosecutor and with a specific mention of disagreement with the possible presence of the police to alleviate the problem.
Following the signing of a new contract by the South Corfu Municipality with another company for the transfer and transportation of waste, there was strong reaction from residents of the area. They believe that the space designated for the Mobile Waste Transfer Station (MWTS) is unsuitable, as it is close to homes and businesses.
The outgoing Mayor states that the area is licensed by the Ionian Islands Regional Authority and urges residents to allow its pilot operation to practically demonstrate its suitability.
However, they are not stepping back. In fact, the area is guarded by a group of citizens to prevent rubbish trucks from entering the Mobile Waste Transfer Station (MWTS), while simultaneously requesting that it operate somewhere else. "The company has stated in its announcement that if another location is found, it can move the Mobile Waste Transfer Station within 24 hours," Kostas Lessis told Enimerosi. "As a municipal authority and during the election campaign, we had said that we want to have a MWTS and committed to finding a plot and we had found the plot that we would lease.
"However, since we have a new municipal authority, I cannot bind them with my decisions. For this reason, we requested the pilot operation of the MWTS, and the next municipal authority can decide where it wants to permanently install it. However, our fellow citizens do not want the pilot operation. I cannot do anything else. Perhaps some want what happened in the past - for riot police to come and impose it by force. I was against it then, and I am against it now."
Over 300 tons of rubbish on the roads
As a result, waste collection has been halted for about a week, and more than 300 tons of rubbish are now present on the main road and within the villages, endangering public health.
"The rubbish is on the road, and we have nowhere to dispose of it," said Mr. Lessis. "Since there is an authorised facility, and citizens do not allow rubbish trucks to unload at the Mobile Waste Transfer Station (MWTS), there is a huge problem in South Corfu. That's why I informed the Prime Minister's office and the Ministries of Environment and Civil Protection, with a copy going to the Prosecutor."
However, once a solution is found, it will take a period of 4-5 days for the municipal services to remove the rubbish that has flooded the area, according to the estimation of the Deputy Mayor for Cleaning Services, Nikos Bogdos.
He pointed out that although efforts were made during the tenure of the current municipal authority to find a plot for the installation of the MWTS, it was not successful, as not all the required specifications were met.
On Wednesday, November 22, the South Corfu Municipal Council will convene for an emergency session at the request of the opposition parties. The sole topic for discussion will be the "Update on the Operation of the South Corfu Waste Transfer Station." The session will take place at 5 p.m. at Lefkimmi Junior High and High School.