Edo State Government has sealed 23 sawmills for being in possession of 279 illegal logs believed to have been harvested without permission from relevant authorities.
Mr Lucky Wasa, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Sustainability, disclosed this while speaking with journalists in Benin on Tuesday.
Wasa, who said that the illegal logs were cut and taken away from the state’s forest reserves at odd hours, vowed that the culprits would be brought to book.
He also said that forest officers and uniform field staff would henceforth be running shifts to curtail activities of illegal loggers.
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He, therefore, called on sawmillers and lorry owners not to accept illegal logs, stating that the full weight of the law would be brought to bear on any defaulter.
The permanent secretary, thereafter, solicited the support of sawmillers and timber contractors in the state to partner with the state government in its afforestation programme.
He further disclosed that the Head of Log Control in the state, Mr Felix Edokpayi, and his team intercepted 242 logs being carted away to a neighbouring state.
The logs, he alleged, were stolen from the creeks of Edo.
According to him, the recovered logs are currently in the custody of the marine police.