Urges measures over dumpsite menace

By Chioma Onuegbu, Uyo

GOVERNOR Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State has ordered the evacuation of the refuse along Uyo village Road dumpsite, the state capital within 48 hours to allow for free flow of vehicular and human traffic.

Emmanuel who gave the order during inspection visit to the dumpsite charged relevant Ministries and Agencies to work together and come up with measures
place to address the menace of disposal of refuse at the dumpsite.

The governor who was represented by the Secretary to State Government, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem, directed that asphalted road be created to enable trucks drive about 50 meters from the major road to the ravine where collected refuse should be dumped as part of measures to stop dumping of waste on the road.

He called the Commissioner for Works, Dr. Eno Ibanga and the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Hensek Construction Integrated Services, Engr Uwem Okoko, to collaborate with the Akwa Ibom State Environmental Protection and Waste Management Agency (AKSEPWMA) and work out remedial plan for the dumpsite within 48 hours.

He also called on the Commissioner for Power, Dr. John Etim to reactivate plans for the recycling of waste into a veritable source of energy, noting that the quantum of waste at the dumpsite could be converted into needed energy and power for consumption for the State.

Speaking, Chairman of AKSEPWMA, Prince Akpan Ikim, said the inspection tour to the dumpsite was expedient as it would enable state government appraise and seek both short and long-term measures towards addressing the refuse menace in the area.

Prince lkim who disclosed that given the cosmopolitan nature of Uyo city, over 18,000 tons of Waste was generated on daily basis for dumping at the dumpsite, expressed satisfaction with the remedial measure taken to evacuate the refuse from the road.

He stressed that, “there is urgent need for a larger and new sanitary dumpsite outside the state capital with a conveyor belt that will recycle the waste while also providing a more convenient and conducive environment with good accessible road for the dumping of refuse

“A State Environmental Protection Bill has already passed first and second hearing on the floor of the State House of Assembly, and I call on public spirited individuals to partner the Agency and indeed the State government in the task of waste management and waste recycling”

Other government officials present during the inspection tour were: the Commissioner for Environment and Solid Minerals, Sir Charles Udoh, the Chairman, Uyo LGA, Dr Uwemedimo Udo, the Councillor in-charge of Environment in Uyo legislative Council, Hon. Stella Archibong.

Meanwhile residents and workers at government House, the State Judiciary Headquarters, and Uyo local government Secretariat would definitely heave a sigh of relief over government’s resolve to do the needful regarding the dumpsite.

It could be recalled that some of them who spoke with Vanguard in May this year had lamented that the stench from the dumpsite makes them feel so uncomfortable.

Even, majority of Akwa Ibom citizens had expressed fear that inhalation from the dumpsite poses serious health implication to people residing in the area, and had appealed that the dumpsite be relocated to a more appropriate location.

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