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Group Tasks FG On Toxic Waste Cleaning Contract

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A group under the aegis of Kano River Line Communities Development Forum, has called on the Federal Government to ensure that only qualified companies are awarded contract for the cleaning of toxic waste in the affected communities.
The spokesman of the Forum, Dr Baba Sani-Wudil, made the call while addressing a news conference in Kano on Wednesday.
Sani-Wudil said the Federal Government since 2006 was aware of the toxic waste which conterminated Wudil and Jakara rivers and was coming from Sharada, Chalawa and Bompai industrial estates.
He said the forum found it necessary to raise the issue because information at its disposal indicated that the Permanent Secretary from the Ecological Trust Funds had awarded contract to another firm instead of Dutch Africa company.
“The Dutch Africa company is the local company that collaborated with the Germans to actualise the project.
“We are shocked with the news that the Ecological Fund Office has decided to deal with an unknown contractor in building waste treatment plants for Kano State,” he said.
According to him, investigation conducted by the group had shown that the new company lacked the required experience in this line of work.
“This unfortunate development is unacceptable. Our group has decided not to abandon our rights but fight for what we feel should come to Kano State, especially after the huge support given to the project by President Muhammadu Buhari and the traditional ruler of Kano.
“It is our opinion that this contract should be awarded to the most qualified company, Dutch Africa which made all the research and development required to design the best and most efficient method of cleaning this toxic effluent.
“The toxic effluent has been affecting the lives of our families, animals and farms for more than a decade and Dutch Africa has been involved in the project from inception,” Sani-Wudil said.
He said that beside engaging many stakeholders, including the state government, emirate council and concerned groups, the Dutch Africa had also promised to train 250 youths in Germany on industrial waste management.
He, therefore, called on the Federal Government to intervene in the issue to ensure that the right thing was done by the agency concerned.
This, according to him, will send signals to public officials in all organisations to sit up and serve the interest of the public rather than take suspicious decisions against the interest of Nigerians.

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Edo Community Drags Abattoir Owner To Court Over Environmental Pollution

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Ikpoba Slope Community in Ikpoba Okha Local Government area of Edo State has dragged Mrs Sarah Uwaifor, owner of an abattoir located at Ohen-Ore in the community to a Benin Chief Magistrate Court over alleged environmental pollution in the community.
In a suit number MOGB/56/2021, Mr Ken Omusi and Mr Kenneth Imafidon, on behalf of Ikpoba Youth Development Association and other inhabitants of the community claimed that the cow dungs and waste excreta from the defendant’s abattoir were dumped in the community as well as burning of cow hair and skin constitute nuisance in the area.
They alleged that the community had tried to persuade her to abate the nuisance but she did not listen to them.
The plaintiff is seeking a declaration of the court that allowing the burning of cow hair, roasting of cow head and dump of cow excreta and dungs in the community constitute health hazards to the inhabitants of the community.
They also prayed for perpetual injunction restraining the defendant, her servants, agents, or workers at the abattoir from dumping cow excreta, roasting cow head and dumping cow dung along the street of the community.
The community are also seeking N5 million general damages from the defendant for the nuisance she has been and still constituting in the area.
The defendant after listening to charges in court pleaded not guilty while the counsel of the plaintiff and defendant Chief Abayomi Thomas and E I. Otabor respectively asked the court to fix a date for hearing.
Chief Magistrate Prince Mutairu Oarhe, consequently, adjourned the case to January 11, 2022, for hearing.

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Oyo Tribunal Fines 60 Persons For Allegedly Violating Environmental Laws

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Oyo State Environmental Tribunal court has fined no fever than 60 persons over various sanitation infractions.
The Tide source reports that 60 people were fined for allegedly flouting the state’s environmental sanitation laws during sanitation on Saturday.
The Tide reports that the violators were fined at Bodija, Iwo-road, Beere, Sapati, Elewi-Odo, Ojoo, Gate, Oke-bola and other locations in Ibadan.
Magistrate, Mr. Raheem Wasiu in his judgment, said the offenders were caught dumping refuse in unauthorised areas and are guilty of violating the environmental sanitation and waste management laws.
He charged the violators a fine of between ¦ 5,000 and ¦ 25,000 for their offences.
Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr. Abiodun Oni, in his remarks, commended the Magistrate for his professionalism.
He added that the present administration in the state, will not leave any stone unturned towards regaining the environmental sanity in the state.
“No matter how we take care of our environment, it usually has an impact on every stakeholder’s health and as soon as we enforce the law, it goes a long way in making the state a healthy one.
“Oyo State is a pacesetter state, a state we should be proud of and strive in making it safe and healthy for all and sundry”.

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Environment

Revive Forest Reserves, Expert Urges RSG

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Worried over the depleting natural resources caused by land prospectors and poachers, Professor of Biodiversity in the Rivers State University, Geofrey Akaniwor has made an appeal to the state government to revive forest conservation.
Akaniwor in an interview with The Tide stated that over five forest reserves in the state are endangered as they have been abandoned over the years.
Among the forest reserves now endangered include  Lower Orashi in Abua/Odual Local Government Area and parts of Kalabari; Upper Orashi in Abua/Odual, Sombreiro Reserve located in parts of Ikwerre and Ahoada Local Government Areas, Otamiri Reserve sited in  Ikwerre and Etche Local Government Areas.
Others are Upper Imo River Reserve in Etche and Daen or Lower Imo River Reserve in Khana Local Government Area.
He also urged that the Andoni Forest Reserve which harbours the remaining forest elephants and hippos in the state should be given attention as well.
The university teacher said forest reserves help promote biodiversity and resource protection warning that endangered species play huge role in sustaining life and stability of the environment.
Besides, he was of the view that conservation can help provide jobs and tourism as government can employ rangers who will be trained to guard those forests from being encroached upon.
Meanwhile, Prof. Akaniwor has recommended that the Port Harcourt Zoological Garden(Zoo) be relocated to more expansive and serene location.
He said the site where the zoo is now has been overtaken by urbanisation and that safety of animals are not safe in such environment
Akaniwor suggested that the zoo can be relocated to either Oyibo Local Government Area by the fringes of Imo River or to Etche where there more expansive land for such facility.

By: Kevin Nengia & Excellent Omehoma

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