Lagos - The Nigerian Navy on Thursday impounded a Belgium Vessel, "MV Euro Cargo Saleno" suspected to be carrying toxic waste on Lagos waters.
Commander, NNS Beecroft, Naval Base Apapa, Commodore Chris Ezekobe, said this when he briefed newsmen in Lagos.
Ezeobe said that three crew members, including the Captain had been detained by the Navy, noting that other crew members were under close watch at APM terminal, Tin-Can, Island, Lagos.
Ezekobe said that the vessel came into Nigeria from Belgium carrying used refrigerators hidden in three trucks.
He said that the Nigerian Navy was alerted on the arrival of the vessel from intelligence report from the National Environmental Standard and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA).
"Based on the information, the Nigerian Navy posted its personnel to be on the lookout for the ship," he said.
He said that vessel was sighted in Nigerian waters on Wednesday and was immediately arrested.
Ezekobe said the vessel would be handed over to Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) for further investigation.
He said that NIMASA and other relevant government agencies would search the vessel to determine its actual content.
Lagos State Coordinator of NESREA Eunice Eze said that the agency received alert from one of its international collaborators that the seized ship was carrying toxic waste.
She said that the importers were aware that the Federal Government banned the importation of used electrical and electronic products into the country.
"Nigeria cannot be used as dumping ground for malfunctioning electronics.
"What some importers do is to import these items, remove the parts they want and set the remaining on fire.
"The smoke emitted is not only toxic, but has been found to be the cause of cancer and other lung-related diseases,’’ she said.