Garbage collectors protest in Nicaragua

Published: Tuesday 15 April 2008

Garbage rots in Managua Thousands of people who eke out a living by selling recyclable trash scavenged from the municipal dump in the Nicaraguan capital, Managua, are staging a protest over control of city's waste.

The garbage pickers have blocked 60 garbage trucks from collecting rubbish from the city. The city produces about 1,200 tonnes of trash every day. Garbage has been piling on the streets since then. The protesters are agitating a municipal government decision encouraging municipal employees to collect recyclable material from the trash heap and directly sell them to companies.

The Managua municipal authorities say the measure will help boost the municipal workers' pay packets. Nicaragua earned us $18 million in 2006 from exports of recyclable material and us $21 million in 2007. Social organizations involved in the movement say the measure has pushed families of garbage pickers to the verge of stravation.

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