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Expert Decries Flooding In N’Delta Seeks Govs’ Intervention

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An environmental rights activist in the Niger Delta, Barrister Iniro Wills, has criticised some state governors in the region for not showing serious concern towards perennial flooding in the region.
Wills, who spoke in an exclusive interview with The Tide in Port Harcourt, said the sooner governors in the region come up with what he called strong policies towards checking flooding in the region, the better it will be for the people.
“Nigeria has to wake up, Niger Delta has to wake up. The Governors of the States in the Niger Delta need to do a lot more.
“This is because the Niger Delta region of Nigeria, more than any other part of the country, should pay the most attention to environmental protection in terms of policies, programs and budgeting”, he said.
Wills continued that state governments in the region should set aside large chunk in their annual budgets to solve the environmental problems of the region.
He described what he called the relegation of ministries of environmental agencies and departments handling environmental issues to the background in the region, stressing that despite the cry for environmental remediation in the region, the elites are only concerned about their personal welfare.
In his word, “in terms of capacity building for institutions, the environment, ministries, departments, and agencies in the Niger Delta, states have been relegated, and this is very saddening”.
He accused the political elites in the region for not showing example as far as environmental remediation was concerned, adding, “when we get into government, when we become ministers, governors and senators and so on, and so forth, we forget about the environment.
“We use the environment as a a ladder to climb to positions. When we get into the positions, whether as governors or as ministers or as agency heads, we forget the environment”, he said .
The activist, however, blamed the situation on lack of political will among the political elite in the region, noting that the region is not lacking in policies and laws, as far as the environment is concerned, but the will to implement them.
“It is not about policies, it is about will. There is no policy or law anywhere in the world that can be implemented without the instrumentality of human agency. So what is lacking is the human will.
“The political will of people who are in decision-making positions, people who decide budget, who allocate resources, but have refused to do anything about protecting the environment, forgetting that the environment is a natural asset,” he said.

By: John Bibor & Adigun Oreoluwa

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Rivers

RSG Tasks Workers On Communication, Record Mgt

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The Rivers State Government has tasked the administrative staff of the State Ministry of Health on Effective Communication and Proper Record Management.
This is in order to prepare the administrative staff of the Ministry on service delivery.
Giving the task while declaring open a two-day workshop on “Understanding Basic Technique of Effective Communication and Record Management”, the Permanent Secretary, Dr Ndidi Emmanuel Utchay, emphasized on the importance of effective communication and record management in service delivery.
According to her, “the essence of the two-day training of administrative staff of the Ministry is to increase their skills and knowledge on key techniques in communication and record management.
“It has been observed that staff lack the understanding of handling confidential and classified documents, files, in public service”, she stated.
She, therefore, charged staff to take advantage of the opportunity of the two-day training to improve on their skills to enhance quality service delivery.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Training Coordinator, Nnamdi and Associates, Sir Cletus Idu, said “it’s a known fact that adequate understanding and clear writing, effective communication, and proper record management constitutes the most precious asset in organisations operating within the purview of public service”.
He further explained that in most cases, “we notice that files are kept with scheduled officers longer than necessary because they do not actually understand what action to take.
“Interaction with some employees show that many do not understand the basic techniques of filling memo writing, indexing, and handling of restricted, secret and classified documents”, he said.
He, therefore, urged participants to utilize the opportunity accorded by the training “by using the knowledge so garnered judiciously”.

By: Sogbeba Dokubo

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RIWAMA Embarks On Evacuation Of Illegal Dump Site

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In a bid to keep Rivers State clean, the Rivers State Waste Management Agency (RIWAMA) has embarked on the evacuation of refuse at the illegal dump site on the bridge linking Egbelu/ Eliopranwo road in Port Harcourt.
The chairman of the agency, Mr Isoboye Jack, who disclosed this during the inspection of the ongoing evacuation exercise at the illegal dump site, said the heap of refuse has caused hazards over the years.
He called on the residents to understand and cooperate with the agency towards achieving a clean and healthy environment in the area.
“We believe that the heaps of refuse over the years has blocked the carnal. If the waterways are blocked it will cause a huge problem which can lead to flooding.
“By evacuating all the refuse here to the approved dump site instead of the unapproved dump site that people are using, it will also help to chase all these scavengers away. We want to make sure that we chase all of them out of this place and provide a receptacle for the people”, he said.
According to him, by the time all waste products are evacuated, the area will be sealed with sink to prevent people from using them as a dump site and a proper receptacle that will be evacuated on a daily basis will be provided for the people.
Isoboye called on the people to obey the ban on dumping of wastes on the median and streets as well as adhere strictly to the dumping hours of 6pm to 10pm daily.
He further called on those doing businesses on the waterways, especially the bricklayers, to desist as they are blocking the canals and causing flooding around the environment.
“Most of them have been complaining that we are stopping them from doing their business, meanwhile what they are supposed to do is to stay off the drainage point. Their sands and cements have been affecting the flow of water thereby causing flood”, he said.
He stated that the task force set up for the enforcement of the ban would be working round the clock to ensure compliance, warning that defaulters will be arrested and prosecuted, especially now that the sanitation court is functional.
The chairman further called on security agencies to collaborate with RIWAMA towards ensuring strict adherence to the rules and regulations of the agency.
Also speaking, the Manager of CDT Logistics, Mr. Charles Obinna, who is in charge of the area, thanked the state government for the move to evacuate the refuse that has pilled up over the years in the area.
He called on both residents and private waste managers to cooperate with the agency to achieve a clean and healthy environment.

By: Iragunima Benice

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Peace Corps Urges Nigerians To Shun Ethnicity

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In a bid to achieve peaceful co-existence in the country, the Peace Corps of Nigeria has advised Nigerians to embrace peace and shun ethnic sentiment.
The founder and national commandant of the corps, Professor Dickson Akoh, made the call on the sidelines of the celebration of the International Day of Peace in Port Harcourt, recently.
The celebration has “End Racism and Build Peace” as its theme.
Professor Akoh, represented by Dominick Uche, decried high level of marginalisation and inequality in various quarters of political and economic life and urged Nigerians to shun religious bigotry for a peaceful society.
He called on various tiers of government to intensify campaign against ethnic sentiments and work towards taking right decisions that will impact on the people.
According to him, Nigerians and their leaders should begin to pursue and institutionalize peace, and put an end to vices.
He noted that insecurity, conflict and ethnic bigotry had grossly affected the youths and development in the country.
Also speaking, the Rivers State Commandant of the peace corps, Dr Michael Obioru, while lamenting the high level of discrimination and tribalism among Nigerians, prayed for national unity and harmony and urged stakeholders to continue to use the tools of advocacy, dispute resolution techniques and campaigns against social ills in the country.
He also called for the empowerment of youths to reduce the rate of crime in the country.

By: Oreoluwa Adigun & Oribim Ibama

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