by Oluwasaye Rachael
The Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) has stopped business activities at the Oyingbo Market, Ebute–Metta due to environmental pollution in the area.
The Managing Director of LAWMA, Dr Muyiwa Gbadegesin, said that the pollution includes indiscriminate refuse dumping, refusal to patronise the Private Sector Participation (PSP) operators, roadside trading and poor hygienic practices resulting in environmental problems in the market.
The News Agency of Nigeria reported that Dr. Gbadegesin said an abatement notice and several warnings has earlier been issued to the traders which yielded no result, thereby leading to the closure. He mentioned that the market would be reopened when traders begin to obey government’s rules and regulations by shunning indiscriminate refuse disposal and patronising assigned PSP operators.
The LAWMA MD further appealed to other markets in the state to inculcate in them the habit of effective waste disposal as markets whose activities are found harmful to the health and environmental wellbeing of the community would be shut down.
According to him, efforts of the state government to enthrone sustainable environment are being undermined by some individuals who will rather dump refuse on unauthorised locations, hence the need for total enforcement. He stated also that the enforcement unit of the agency had been mandated to work round-the-clock to clamp down on all environmental infractions capable of derailing efforts of the authority toward environmental sustainability in the state.
“Section 115 (4) and 116 part IV, Environmental Sanitation Nuisances and Litters, as well as Section 81, Part III, Lagos Waste Management Authority of Environmental Management and Protection Law 2017, prohibits dumping of waste at undesignated places, which attracts specified sanctions,” he said.
Dr. Gbadegesin said, “The state’s laws are quite clear on the prohibition of illegal refuse disposal. It shows zero tolerance for environmental infractions and violators would be duly sanctioned to serve as a deterrent to other residents. I therefore implore on residents to support efforts of the state government to establish a cleaner and healthier the environment in Lagos by ensuring they bag their waste appropriately, as well as patronising assigned PSP operators.”
He concluded that LAWMA would continue the distribution of waste disposal bags under its Blue Box Initiative, for residents to sort their waste and dispose appropriately.