An Ibadan Magistrates’ Court, on Wednesday, sentenced 31 persons to six months imprisonment each for violating the Oyo State environmental law.
A statement issued in Ibadan by the state Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr Kehinde Ayoola, said that the violators were, however, given options of N12,500 bail each by the Magistrate, Mrs Patricia Adetuyibi.
He said that 21 of the offenders fulfilled their bail conditions, while 10 others, who failed to meet the conditions, were slammed with community services.
Ayoola said that the environmental law violators were arrested during the monitoring of the environmental sanitation exercise by government officials, led by Gov. Seyi Makinde, at Ojoo interchange.
Ayoola said that the violators were arrested by officers of the ministry at different locations for indiscriminate dumping of refuse at unauthorised places within Ibadan metropolis.
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“Thereafter, they were arraigned before a Magistrate, Mrs Patricia Adetuyibi, for contravening the Environmental Law of Oyo State.
“The magistrate ruled that the offenders be imprisoned for six months or pay a fine of N12,500 each.
“Twenty-one of the offenders fulfilled their bail terms, while 10 others, who failed to meet the terms, were slammed with community services,’’ the commissioner said.
He said that the arraignment was further proof of government’s determination to reduce the menace of unlawful disposal of refuse to its barest minimum.
“When we said we would fight this menace to a stop and put saboteurs to a halt, we meant business.
“This is why the state government, under the leadership of Gov. Seyi Makinde deployed its whole apparatus to enforce the law on environmental sanitation in the state.
“The governor is so passionate about the cleanliness of the environment; this is why our officers will not hesitate to clamp down on all violators of environmental laws,” he said.
The commissioner urged members of the public to desist from unlawful disposal of refuse, as government had deployed its officers in strategic places to apprehend offenders.
In a related development, a middle-aged man, identified as Mutiu Odeniran, who was caught offloading his van full of refuse by the roadside, was fined N42,500 for violating the environmental laws of the state.
Odeniran, who was apprehended at the Molete axis of the state capital by the Environmental Health Officers on Wednesday last week, was arraigned before Magistrate Adetuyibi.