The Edo State Government, on Tuesday, commenced clampdown of violators of environment laws in Benin metropolis, as part of stepped-up efforts to ensure a cleaner and safer environment.
The Edo State Commissioner for Environment and Sustainability, Engr. Jonathan Lawani, led officials from the ministry, public health workers and waste management board officers to clamp down on the violators in major streets and markets within the Benin metropolis.
He said, "We are enforcing environmental laws within the state. About three weeks ago, we started operation clean Edo where we advised residents to also join the government in its effort to clean up the state.
“The government has commenced clearing and cleaning up public places. We have cleared up overgrown grasses, swept and cleaned up different places, including Airport Road, Sapele Road, Oba Market Road and Siluko Road, among others. We have now said that people should now support us in this cleanup exercise and by doing so, we have advised our health officers to do their jobs by serving abatement notices and other notices to residents to ensure that they clean up their premises and evacuate their wastes properly.
“At the Aduwawa Market, despite the 'No Refuse Dump' sign, they have continued to indiscriminately dump refuse here. Now, we have agreed to work with the vigilantes that are in this market to make sure that those that are doing this are arrested. We have given the vigilantes our numbers so they can reach us anytime they find anybody doing this so they can be arrested and prosecuted.”
At Upper Mission Extension, the commissioner commended some businesses and residents who kept to the requirements of the law regarding waste disposal while violators were arrested and made to face the law.
He stated, “We visited those we have served court summons and arrested some offenders who have not complied with the instructions and notices served to them. We also noticed that some people don't even have waste bags in their houses. All they do is wait for the night and bring waste from their houses to dump here because they know the government is coming to pick it up. We arrested some offenders and are taking them to the mobile court for them to be tried according to the environmental laws of the state.”
Jonathan further advised residents: “Bag your wastes properly, patronize only accredited waste managers and ensure to pay for your waste to be evacuated to the accredited dumpsites so that Benin can be clean and healthy for everyone.”