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Increase in population cause of indiscriminate refuse disposal - Agency

11 September 2013, 20:00

Makurdi - Benue State Environmental Sanitation Agency (BENSESA) general manager, Ediga Akpa, has identified increased population is the cause of the indiscriminate dumping of refuse in parts of Makurdi.

Akpa told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in an interview on Wednesday that the migration of people into the state following the activities of some dissident groups, had resulted to population surge in the state.

He said the increase in population was exerting enormous pressure on their waste management efforts.

He noted that more waste were being generated without a corresponding increase in the number of refuse trucks and dumpsters.

The general manager also blamed poor penalties charged defaulters as another factor responsible for the indiscriminate dumping of waste in the state capital.

He said that unless stiffer penalties were enacted, people would continue to break the sanitation laws.

"In Benue, defaulters are fined as low as N2, 000 and sometimes it is children that are caught by our men.

"This law can only stand if the Lagos model is adopted where offenders are made to pay up to N50 000 as penalty.’’

Akpa appealed to the people to change their attitudes on environmental issues as the consequences of an unhealthy environment were enormous.

He assured that the agency would continue to evacuate waste wherever they were dumped and provide refuse bins at designated spots, to make the state environmentally clean.

The general manager said the agency would embark on monthly sensitisation programme to educate the people on safe environmental habits.

He also said that the agency was working toward a sustainable partnership with the private sector in finding solutions to the environmental challenges of the state.

Akpa gave an assurance that the state Ministry for Environment was working out a holistic approach to address the challenges being faced by the agency.

He warned defaulters of environmental laws to desist or face the wrath of the law.



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