Lagos - The ship, MV Marivia, arrested at the Tin-Can Island Port in Lagos on
Wednesday with two containers of e-waste is still being detained, the
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
An official of the Tin-Can Island
Container Terminal, who preferred anonymity, told NAN on Saturday that
the ship is still there and has not sailed out’. The source said that
the ship had finished discharging other goods and was closely being
guarded by security men.
two offensive containers were laden with used electronics, including
television sets, computers, central processing units (CPU), digital
video recorders, microwaves, pressing irons and stereo sets. The 23,652
tonnage container ship which berthed on Wednesday
arrived from Tilbury in London.
The authorities of Nigerian Ports
Authority (NPA), Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency
(NIMASA), NESREA and the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) detained the
vessel. The numbers of the two containers are: ECMU 9894510
and ECMU 9870858.
On Friday, Hajia Hadiza Mailafia, the Minister of
Environment, told reporters in Abuja that the owners of the vessel had
been fined one million dollars to serve as a deterrent. Mailafia said
that the culprits involved in the intercepted vessel
would face life imprisonment if convicted. Earlier, Dr Ngeri Benebo,
the Director-General of National Environment Standards Regulatory Agency
(NESREA), had told NAN that the containers would be sent back to the
port of origin.
Benebo said the repatriation
of the containers were in conformity with the provisions of the Harmful
Wastes Act. "We are sending the e-wastes back to the port of origin,’’
the director-general said. She said that the agency’s action was guided
by the provisions of the laws of Nigeria
and warned that
"Nigeria would resist any attempt by any country to
make the country a dumping ground.” The director-general said the
suspected importers of the cargo were traced to Umezime Street, Alaba
International Market, and arrested.
Meanwhile, a maritime
expert, who did not want his name mentioned, said the security around
the ship was expected. According to the expert, the security agencies
will strive to avoid a repeat of the escape of the illegal bunkering
ship MT African Pride from Nigerian waters in August
2004. NAN reports that this is not the first attempt to dump toxic
wastes in Nigeria.
The first time was in 1988 when a shipment of over
3,500 tonnes of toxic wastes from Italy was dumped in Koko Port in
Delta. In April 2010, the NCS arrested and detained
a Maersk Line vessel, MV Nashiville, laden with toxic waste (lead
batteries classified as Basel code A1180 and broken televisions. In June
2010, NCS also arrested and detained a ship, MV Gumel, in Lagos Port
for bringing eight containers with materials suspected
to be toxic waste. Also a vessel, MV Vera D, carrying three containers
laden with toxic black and white television sets, was detained at the
Tin-Can Port, Lagos, in October 2010.
The toxic-laden containers were
sent back to the port of origin in the U.S. In
December 2012, NESREA impounded four containers of used electronics
described as `e-wastes’ in Apapa port.