Muscat: Picnickers, passers-by and visitors to beaches, parks and other public places are advised to clean up after they have finished.
Usually, public places with a large number of visitors are left messed up and littered after long weekends and public holidays, such as the nine–day Eid break for citizens and residents in Oman enjoyed recently.
An eco-warrior and volunteer at ‘Clean Up Oman,’ Batool Mohsen Baqer says, “It’s a common phenomena these days, not only during long public holidays but also during the weekends, when people go to beaches or parks, they litter behind them. This is not linked to a season, it’s just that some people have the habit of littering; they don’t clean up and so you would find a lot of beautiful public spots being messed up when people have picnicked or visited there.”
“I was actually seeing some pictures from the mountains in Salalah, where people have littered and it’s really sad to see. There were voluntary groups trying to clean up, that was a good thing. However, for the people, they are there for the Khareef season, to enjoy and have fun so they need to protect and preserve our environment too.”
Although not linked with a specific season or time, these practices are more abundant during longer public holidays. “This happens every day, if someone has a habit of throwing garbage in random places, they will do that at any place they go to. I keep getting news from my friends from Sohar, Sawadi, Barka and other places that whenever there is a weekend (holiday), the following day the public places are a total mess. We are also getting lots of complains from Jabal Akhdar.”
As a responsible member of society, Baqer urged people to clean up after they are done, “Usually in our organisation, we mostly go out during weekends, to the wadis and other spots. Sometimes while we are cleaning and if we see expats or Omanis sitting there, we give them trash bags to indirectly ask them to clean their mess once they are ready to leave. We have received wonderful response from some people, who are so happy with this gesture, where a lot of people join us to clean with their friends and kids.”
Another volunteer said she is really sad to see the selfish behaviour of humans.
“It’s disappointing to see that people cannot clean up after they have finished. Especially during and after holidays, it’s disgusting to see that there are plastic bottles, foil wraps, plastic bags, plastic cutlery, paper plates, and other waste materials just left behind.
“They need to awaken their conscience and reflect on what they have been doing. Nature is our only source of hope and this is the way we want to give back to it?”