The federal government, through the National Environmental Standards and Regulation Enforcement Agency (NESREA), has sealed off a quarry site belonging to the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation and a brick company in the state of ‘Ekiti for non-compliance with the stipulated environmental regulations.
The federal agency, through its Abuja and state officials, was also prevented from sealing off one of the sites of the Chinese company responsible for the construction of the cargo airport underway in the ‘State.
NESREA Deputy Director, Dr. NC Beka, alongside State Coordinator, Ms. Abosede Toroni, led officials on moving the application to construction site, manufacturing and quarry businesses located along Ado-Ijan road, Ire-Ekiti and Igbemo -Afao-Ekiti roads respectively on Monday.
Speaking Beka lamented that businesses have failed since coming to the state to comply with established rules and guidelines regarding the environment, which he said could be detrimental to the health of residents.
He explained that according to the laws establishing the agency, the agency is committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of residents and the next generation, hence the need for industries to do what is necessary, including by obtaining the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) document. .
He added that all of the agency’s correspondence and efforts to compel companies to comply with the laws have been frustrated, revealing that the seal would only be removed after the necessary paperwork had been completed and presented to the agency. .
According to him, “Remember that we are one of the parastatal organizations of the Ministry of the Environment and that we have the mandate to enforce all environmental laws. Laws that will help people lead healthier and cleaner lives. We do this because any development must be done in a sustainable way so as not to degrade the land it sits on, for generations to come.
“There are tools that help us make this sustainable development, such as environmental impact assessment (EIA) and auditing. They help us know what kind of impact the business has on society and how it can be mitigated for the benefit of people. We told these companies to do the assessment, but obviously they didn’t do an EIA before going to the site and others didn’t do an audit every three year.
“We managed to seal two companies, but the third prevented us from doing our job, which would be sued for obstruction, as it is a crime in the law creating the agency.”
On the expectations of sealed companies, he said, “they should do what they are told to do. As a first step, they were told to carry out an audit or carry out an EIA, if they have broken these rules, they must follow the procedures to have their site unsealed.
“As Nigerians, we should be concerned about the type of behavior of people who know what to do but deliberately avoid it. Let me tell you, this cannot happen anywhere in the world. In any developed country , they protect their land and the environment because it is out of the environment that they will get everything we need.
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