DAR ES SALAAM is the eighth dirtiest city in the world, according to the international rating company NYC Partnership Consulting. In the firm's rating of the 30 dirtiest cities around the globe, the Azerbaijan city of Baku was rated the dirtiest of them all, followed by Ethiopias Addis Ababa (2nd), Mexico City (3rd), Argentinas Buenos Aires (4th), and Madagascars Antananarivo (5th). The capital city of Bangladesh, Dhaka, is rated number 6, while Nepals Kathmandu is on number 7 followed by Dar. In 9th place is Central African Republic capital city Bangui, and placed 10th is Lome, capital city of Togo. Contacted by THISDAY for comment last week, Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner William Lukuvi acknowledged that the city is indeed filthy, but dismissed the NYC Partnership Consulting rating. It is true and I accept that the city of Dar es Salaam is dirty, but I can't say anything about international standards. I dont know the criteria they used in their rating and therefore I'm not in a position to comment on that, said Lukuvi in a telephone interview. Dar es Salaam is made up of three municipalities; namely Kinondoni, Ilala and Temeke. According to the RC, authorities are now working on strategies to ensure that the city is clean and environment is preserved in a bid to rectify the situation. Such strategies include each municipal council enacting by-laws and action plans that address issues of filthiness and environmental degradation, Lukuvi said. He added that the by-laws are expected to be in place in about a month's time, and will take into consideration various inputs from members of the general public. Envisaged strategies for keeping the city clean include procurement of new cleaning equipment for each municipality. At present, the municipalities hire such equipment from private companies. In addition, while currently the three municipalities also engage private companies to collect garbage and charge the wananchi for the service, the RC said in future the task of collecting levies will be done by the respective municipal authorities themselves. The present system is messed up. You cant have a contracted company collect garbage and levies at the same time. The municipalities will henceforth be responsible for collecting the levies and paying the companies that are contracted to collect the garbage, Lukuvi explained. He attributed the filthiness of the nation's erstwhile commercial capital to lack of proper cleaning equipment and the shifting of the Kigogo dump site to Pugu further away on the outskirts of the city, amongst other things. Said Lukuvi: A garbage truck which previously was making up to 10 trips per day to the Kigogo dump site, now does just one trip a day to the Pugu site. This results in a pile-up of garbage. Giving a personal rating of the three municipalities in terms of filthiness, the RC cited Kinondoni as the dirtiest and Temeke the cleanest, with Ilala sandwiched in between. In a separate interview, Kinondoni Municipality executive director Raphael Ndunguru would neither confirm nor deny the assertion made by the regional commissioner. I dont want to comment on my superiors pronouncement. What I can tell you is that we are now set to tackle the problem, Ndunguru stated. He echoed Lukuvis declaration on the need to purchase new cleaning equipment, noting that Kinondoni Municipality has ordered 27 trailers with a carrying capacity of 15 cubic metres each for garbage collection. The NYC Partnership Consulting rating compared 245 large capitals and other cities around the world to come up with the 30 dirtiest. The rating was based on level of air pollution, level of usefulness of drinkable water, level of use of waste and waste processing, quality of medical services, and proximity of infectious diseases. When contacted for comment, the Minister of State in the Vice President's Office responsible for environmental matters, Dr Batilda Burian, said she had not been notified of the NYC Partnership Consulting rating and was thus unaware of the criteria used.