By Bejay Browne
AN illegal tip in Paphos which has seen unwanted waste from grape products and other rubbish being dumped there for years, is still causing huge problems for the area, according to the Green party.
MP George Perdikis posed a question to the ministry of the environment on May 12 this year to find out what action, if any, would be taken by the authorities to prevent people continuing to dump all sorts of rubbish at the site close to Stroumpi village. The area has traditionally been used to dump unwanted grape waste. This problem was first raised by the MP more than five years ago.
Agriculture Minister Nikos Kouyialis noted that a recent visit to the area by inspectors from the environment department, showed that although waste including prunings, excavation construction and demolition waste was still present, the amount was smaller than when Perdikis first raised the complaint in 2010. Prohibitive disposal signs are also in places, he added.
However, Andreas Evlavis, the district secretary of the Paphos Green Party said that it was not a satisfactory answer or a solution to a dire situation, after five years of waiting.
“This is a large area and we (the Paphos district committee for the Greens) need to discuss the continuing problem and the minister’s answers to see what measures can be taken,” he said.
Perdikis was informed about the troublesome area – Marathovounos in Stroumpi- which is being used for dumping vine cuttings and grape by- products as well as other unwanted items a number of years ago. He said that the rubbish dump was created without the approval or permission from the community council Stroumpi.
“From then until today the landfill is being used illegally by the residents of the neighbouring communities of Stroumpi, Kathikas, Giolou, Theletra, Inia, Drouseia and others for throwing away waste. Although, as I was informed, the council Stroumpi has tried many times to enclose the space and has posted signs prohibiting the disposal of garbage, dumping of rubbish continues. “
Stroumpi council sent letters of complaint to the Paphos District Office, the Department of Public Works and the Department of the Environment, asking them to take immediate measures to close the landfill, he said. “However, no corrective action has been taken by the relevant departments.”
The minister said that following complaints made in July 2010, inspectors from the environmental department carried out a site visit and found illegally disposed waste, including pruning, rubbish from excavating, construction and demolition work, wood, old furniture, electrical appliances and so on.
A letter was then sent to the community council of Stroumpi to implement the relevant laws, ensure immediate cleaning and tidying of the area and to take the necessary measures to end the illegal practice. A copy of the latter was also sent to the ministry of the interior and the Paphos district officer, he said.
Evlavis said: “The problem might not be as bad as it was previously, but it still exists and all sorts of unwanted items are being dumped here with no thought for the environment. Something must be done to stop this. Writing letters isn’t enough.”