Combating litter and protecting our environment is everyone’s business and therefore, there should be a national movement to keep our country clean.

This was highlighted by the Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Waterways and Environment, Dr. Mahendra Reddy while officiating at the litter Act 2008 Litter Prevention Officer (LPO) Enforcement Training at Fiji Surf warehouse in Nadi yesterday.

Minister
Reddy reiterated littering is a national concern and to combat this,
engagements from communities and individuals is vital.

Dr.
Reddy further reiterated a call for a national movement engaging every
individual from communities, villagers, towns, and cities to combat litter.

“We
need to change the mindset of the people towards protecting the environment and
every individual should take ownership to keep our environment clean,” said Dr
Reddy.

“The
issue of keeping Fiji clean is a responsibility for every citizen of this
country and the solution to this lies amongst us as we are causing these
problems.

“Some
people in our community throw rubbish in other neighborhoods and have no regard
for the quality of life for those living in those communities.”

Dr.
Reddy informed the participants that littering cannot be localized. Litter in
one place can have an impact on a very wide range of geographical space, health,
environment quality and this can also affects our waterways.

Minister
Reddy said littering is a serious offense where everyone will be dealt with if
caught by the enforcement officers.

“Littering
is an offense and anyone found littering will be prosecuted. Littering not only
provides a bad image, but it also creates a threat to the environment causing
serious health hazards. It is also a major contributor to flooding which blocks
our waterways,” said Hon. Dr. Reddy.

A
total of thirteen litter prevention officers attended a one-day training.

The
Litter Act 2008 is administered by the Department of Environment but can be
enforced by a number of authorized litter prevention officers, which includes
police officers, Land Transport Officers, Public health officers, and other
Public Officers.

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