Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) says it is embarking on environmental projects to reduce the harmful effects of air pollution in the Federal Capital Territory.
The Chairman, Governing Board of AEPB, Dr Yahaya Bawuro, said this on Tuesday as part of celebration of the 2019 World Environment Day in Abuja.
The global day holds on June 5 annually to create awareness on environmental challenges and ways to address them.
The theme for the year is “Beat Air Pollution’’.
Bawuro said that AEPB had been involved in many projects to reduce the harmful effects of air pollution such as banning the use of tyres to burn meat in abattoirs.
“We are embarking on campaign against open defecation, bush burning and trees planting.
“We have also been engaged in the Blue Bin Project to encourage recycling of waste materials thereby reducing the quantum of waste that goes to its landfill and reduce the methane gas emission in the dumpsites,’’ he said.
Mr Christian Ohaa, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), expressed FCTA’s commitment toward ensuring hitch-free environment.
Ohaa, who was represented by Mr Usman Yahaya said that FCT Administration was committed toward mitigating environmental hazards and enhancing healthy environment for the present and future generation of residents.
Mr Edicha Abdullahi, an Associate Professor from the Department of Geography and Environment, University of Abuja, said that tree planting and solar energy investment would assist in addressing air pollution in the country.
Edited by Grace Yussuf
Waste collection still on despite FCT lock-down, AEPB says
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), says the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), lockdown has not stopped the board from carrying out its mandate of waste collection and disposal.
Ms Kate Ogbonna, Head, Environment, Health and Safeguarded Department, AEPB, made this known in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency , on Monday in Abuja.
Ogbonna said that AEPB contractors saddled with the responsibility of waste collection have been moving round all the areas under their purview to collect waste since the lock-down.
“The lock-down did not affect our duties, we are essential workers. Our contractors have been moving round to collect refuse to curb disposal of wastes in canals or waterways by residents,” she said.
Ogbonna said that AEPB had continued to sensitise residents in Kuchigoro and other villages in FCT on hand washing, use of sanitiser and social distancing to curtail it spread.
Edited By: Nyisom Fiyigon Dore
AEPB advises FCT estate management on proper estates cleaning to avoid sanctions
NNN: The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) has advised estate management in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to ensure proper cleaning of their estates to avoid sanctions.
Ms Kate Ogbonna, the Head, Environment, Health and Safety Department of AEPB, gave the advice in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency on Monday in Abuja.
Ogbonna said the advice became imperative as many estates in FCT were filthy and unhealthy for living.
She said that premises inspection conducted by AEPB officers revealed poor hygiene conditions of some estates which could cause outbreak of Lassa fever and other diseases.
`We have served abatement notice to some estates found dirty to do the needful and ensure their estates are clean and healthy.
“I don’t want to mention any estate now because we have served them abatement notice but failure to clean up their estates will attract serious sanction,’’ she said.
Ogbonna also advised estate management to ensure their waste collectors were duly registered with AEPB to enable them dispose their wastes in AEPB approved dumping sites.
“Some estates are engaging unregistered waste collectors to evacuate their wastes and they dump them in wrong places, such as drainage and bushes, which is unacceptable.
“Any unregistered waste collector dumping wastes in undesignated sites and the estates that hired it will face the wrath of AEPB.’’
Edited By: Grace Yussuf
All hands are on deck to make FCT Abattoirs clean- AEPB
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) says all hands are on deck to ensure all abattoirs in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) are clean.
Ms Kate Ogbonna, the Head, Environment, Health and Safety Department of AEPB made this known to the Nigeria News Agency on Wednesday in Abuja.
Ogbonna said that AEPB and the Veterinary Council had series of meetings with the management of abattoirs to ensure FCT abattoirs cleanliness and animals being slaughtered were also in good condition.
She said that AEPB had commenced sensitisation in all the FCT abattoirs to ensure butchers and meat carriers complied with FCT Administration standards.
“We have sensitised abattoirs management, butchers and meat carriers on best ways to handle, slaughter and convey animals with FCTA identified haulage vans instead of using tricycles and personal vehicles.
“We have also sensitised them not to use tyres to roast or remove animal skins but we noticed that some abattoirs are still indulging in such act which makes the animal unhealthy for human consumption,” she said.
Ogbonna said that those days public health workers and veterinary doctors were working together to ensure animals slaughtered in all abattoirs were in good condition.
“But today, we the environmental health officers only go to the abattoirs for inspections and submit reports to FCT Agric Secretariat because they are in charge of animals.
“We want FCTA to put adequate and speedy enforcement in place to enable us perform better and monitor animal being slaughtered everyday and the condition of abattoirs.”
Edited By: Grace Yussuf
Sanitation: FCTA opens bid for AEPB’s 47 lots of cleaning contract
As part of measures to keep Abuja clean, the FCT Administration (FCTA) on Wednesday opened bid for 47 slots for cleaning, supply of vehicles and other materials for Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB).
The Nigeria News Agency reports that the opening of the bids for the AEPB environmental cleaning sanitation was through the Procurement Department of FCTA, which was advertised four weeks ago.
Addressing newsmen on the sidelines of the exercise, the Director FCT Procurement, Malam Ibrahim Gusau, said the pre-qualification (technical bid) exercise was for a three-year contract for the advertised 47 lots.
Gusau noted that the Department in line with the Procurement Act invited organisations such as Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), ICPC, NGOs and the media to witness the exercise.
He disclosed that at the first attempt to open the technical bidding in 2019, more than 450 companies bid and it was cancelled because of complaints and petitions.
According to him, after the pre-qualification (technical bid) exercise, the companies that are credible might be invited for financial bid in the next three to four months.
Gusau assured that the department was going to do its best to ensure fairness and credibility as well as listen to complaints.
“We have advertised for 47 lots of the cleaning and supply of vehicles and materials like computers.
“It is a three-year contract, and we hope that the companies that will win are capable of doing the work.
“We have to follow due diligence to ensure that the companies are qualified, because at times companies that are not qualified come and bid, and at end if they did not win they will complain.
“You know cleaning of the city is a very difficult task, you have to have the manpower.
“We want to be very transparent and make sure we follow due process. At the end of this bidding, we hope to achieve our aim, which is to be transparent, credible and fair.
“We are not going to do anything that will truncate the exercise.
This work is for the public and the administration, because we want to make sure that the city is cleaned,” Gusau said.
Edited by: Chioma Ugboma/Muhammad Suleiman Tola
AEPB expresses commitment to sensitising residents on effect of climate change
Mr Shehu Lawan, the Director, Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) on says the board is committed to effective sensitisation campaign on the effect of climate change to FCT residents.
Lawan made this known during the 2019 World Environmental Health Day, in Abuja with the theme: “Climate Change Challenges, Time for Global Environmental Health to Act in Unison’’.
He said that AEPB was committed to instructing all the staff of the board to embark on effective sensitisation campaign to the general public on the climate change challenges and its effects in the FCT.
“There is also a need to instruct and educate communities against the challenges and effects of climate variability at the grassroots level.
“I want to assure the public that the board will rededicate all the members of the staff to educate people on the effect of climate change.
“The sensitisation will help people to know the kind of activities the public can be doing to mitigate climate change effectively,’’ he said.
“According to World Health Organisation (WHO) between 2030 to 2050 climate change is expected to cause approximately 250,000 additional deaths yearly from malnutrition, malaria diarrhea among others,’’ he said.
Lawan, however, urged all the relevant stakeholders to join hands to ensure effective mitigation of climate change and protection of environment across the country.
Mr Damian Mgbaramuko, the President, Environmental Health Officers Association of Nigeria (EHOAN) said the purpose celebrating the environmental health day was to raise global attention on issues affecting environmental health globally.
Mgbaramuko said that climate change remained a very complex issue, adding that global communities were faced with the challenges of how to predict its occurrences.
He said that the communities were also faced with challenges on how to prepare and put measures that would help communities cope with the unpleasant consequences brought about by climate change.
“It is no longer news that the climate continues to change for the worst. Climate change is a change in the statistical properties of the climate that persist for several decades or even longer.
“The need to take action to address climate change challenges is very important and something needful must be done.
“Our communities should be adequately educated to desist from practices that are harmful to environmental health,’’ he said.
Mr Simeon Ajueyitsi, the Director, Environmental Health Department, AEPB called on relevant stakeholders to take adequate actions in ensuring effective ways to tackle the climate change challenges.
Ajueyitsi said that climate change was a variation of weather conditions over a long period of time, adding that the realities of climate change must be addressed efficiently.
According to him, there will be hope if we invest more on public enlightenment with a goal of dissuading both the illiterates and literates.
“There will be also hope if we use appropriate platforms that will reduce and control climate change.
“We are in one way or the other sufferers of environmental insult, due to our unwillingness to do the needful by adopting environmentally friendly alternatives,’’ he said.
Edited by Grace Yussuf
Inadequate manpower hinders effective service delivery – AEPB
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) says inadequate environmental health officers has hindered the effective service delivery in environmental sanitation and inspection of premises across the country.
Mr Simeon Ajueyitsi, the Director of Environmental Health and Safety, made this known at a one-day seminar for environmental health officers organised by AEPB on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said that inefficient manpower had been a huge challenge faced by the environmental health officers, and the challenge had resulted to poor service delivery in the area of environmental sanitation and inspection activities.
“In the FCT and other states in the country, the number of environmental health officers are few and some of them are not even committed to sanitary inspection of premises.
“Therefore, the need for employment of environmental health officers has become necessary to enhance sanitation inspection across the country.
“The operation of environmental health officer in federal, state and local government areas has not been properly felt due to inefficient number of practicing professionals in the labour market,’’ Ajueyitsi said.
Ajueyitsi called on relevant stakeholders to be effectively involved in the inspection of premises, adding that the effort would enhance more coverage and promote effective sanitation across the country.
He, however, advised the environmental health officers to have a team spirit in the inspection of premises as such would help achieve the mandate of the board.
Mr Andy Ukah, the Director, the Environment Health Officer Registration of Council of Nigeria (EHORECON) urged the government agencies and other relevant stakeholders to set a standard that would enhance premises inspection services across the country.
He said government should also enforce programmes that would deal with those who did not comply with the premises inspection service standards.
He encouraged the states and local government areas to monitor and evaluate the activities as well as the effective implementation of sanitation activities and premises inspection.
Mrs Kate Ogbonna, the AEPB Deputy Director, Environmental Health, said that importance of sanitary inspection of premises was for the correction of insanitary condition.
Ogbonna said that effective sensitisation on the importance of sanitary premises inspection was very necessary to ensure a safe and healthy country.
She said that sanitary inspection of premises “cannot be over emphasised ‘’as it would help to prevent infection diseases such as cholera, typhoid and polio, among others.
She urged Nigerians to join the environmental officers to achieve effective and successful environmental sanitation across the country.
Edited by Celine-Damilola Oyewole/Grace Yussuf
AEPB frowns at rampant sale of donkey meat in FCT
By Salisu Sani-Idris
Abuja, Sept. 1, 2019 The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEBP), has decried the rampant sale of donkey meat in the Federal Capital Territory.
Malam Baba Lawan, Director, AEPB, in a statement on Sunday in Abuja, also decried the unhealthy state of meat brought into the FCT for sale to residents.
Lawan, in a statement signed by Malam Muktar Ibrahim, Head of Information and Outreach Programme Unit of AEPB, said that the situation had become “totally unacceptable”.
“There is no guarantee of the health status of the meat brought in from the states, unfortunately the jurisdiction of FCT inspection and regulatory agencies does not extend to other states,” the statement said.
Lawan directed the Department of Monitoring and Enforcement to seize and destroy any fresh meat from outside brought for sale in FCT.
“We are determined to protect public interest and not to run anyone out of business.
“We don’t want any economic loss to anyone but there is no going back. The policy has already been approved by FCT Administration. What we want is to upgrade the meat value chain.
“As a budding world class city and capital of Africa’s most populous nation, Abuja attracts a lot of local and foreign dignitaries, therefore, it deserves nothing but the best, especially in food quality.
“Thus, the meat that is consumed in the FCT must meet global food safety standards,” he declared.
The statement also quoted Dr Regina Adulugba, Director, Veterinary Services, in the Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, as saying that it was unacceptable that FCT should be left behind while other states had since upgraded their Meat Haulage Policy.
`As soon as ministers settle down, the FCTA will declare an emergency in its Abattoirs and slaughter slabs to ensure that every animal slaughtered in FCT is healthy and safe for human consumption.
“Many of the butchers bringing in fresh meat into FCT today operated in the FCT before absconding to the states.
“It is quite disturbing that their movement out of FCT coincided with intensification of meat inspection and supervisory rules in FCT.
“They are free to operate in the states, but FCT should never be turned to a centre for dumping unhealthy meat. We won’t allow that,” the statement said.
We don’t collect cash payment on service rendered – AEPB
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) has advised the residents of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) not to pay cash to its staff on official services rendered.
He noted that some AEPB staff had formed the habit of collecting cash payment from FCT residents on services rendered such as waste collections, connecting houses to the central sewage, among others.
“Some staff and fraudsters are now issuing payment receipts for services rendered, which have come to our notice.’’
He noted that some fraudsters in connivance with some bank officials created an account reading AEPB account and some FCT residents were ignorantly paying into it.
“What I am saying is that for every service that AEPB offers, you don’t need to pay cash, if you are asked to pay cash just know that those people are fraudsters or criminals.
“Even if they claim to be our staff, they are criminally minded staff engaging in criminal activities because that money is not coming into government pocket,” he said.
Edited by Grace Yussuf
Illegal trading: AEPB arrests over 200 persons daily
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) says it is arresting more than 200 persons engaged in trading at unauthorised locations in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Mr Muktar Ibrahim, the Head of Information of the board, disclosed this in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria on Monday in Abuja.
Ibrahim said that the arrests were made on people operating on pedestrian bridges, walk ways, traffic and undesignated areas within the city.
He said that the monitoring and enforcement department of AEPB in collaboration with some security agencies were able to make the arrests.
According to him, the arrests are in line with the Act that established the AEPB to ensure sanity in FCT and to make the city compete with other first class cities in the world.
“I cannot give you an exact figure out rightly, but I can tell you that on the average over 200 people were being arrested on a daily basis and that is from the record we have all over the city.
“Our operations cover the whole city not just Wuse and Garki, it covers everywhere within the city and our activities are very noticeable.
“So, we have being making arrests on a daily basis and arraigned them at the AEPB mobile courts; at least, there are some measures of sanity within the city centre now.
“This is what we have been doing, it is an ongoing exercise and we are working in collaboration with security agencies such as the Nigeria Security Defence Corp (NSDC) and the Nigeria Police Force, among others,” he said.
According to him, AEPB enforcement department is working round the clock to ensure all pedestrian bridges and walk ways, among others, are kept free from illegal trading activities.
“It has been a big challenge but we are not deterred, our enforcement department has come up with a strategy to tackle this menace.
“The enforcement team now monitors illegal trading and hawking in the morning, afternoon and at night in the FCT.
“So, we are working round the clock to check people that just take open spaces they see and turn them to shops.”
However, he said that some hawkers had bent not to leave some spots or pedestrian bridges in spite of arresting and charging them to the AEPB mobile courts.
“At Area 3 junction, immediately it is 5 p.m, hawkers turn the place to a real market place so it has been a running battle with our men.
“We are also having running battles to clear hawkers and beggars at Area 3 and Area1 pedestrian bridges.
“We are also facing the same problem at Gwarimpa pedestrian bridge and other suburbs in the FCT,’’ he said.
According to him, the 1997 AEPB Act, which is 22 years old now, is outdated and the punishments on the Act against hawkers are ineffective compared to their offences.
“The fine on illegal traders by AEPB mobile court is N1,000 because that is what is in the Act since 1997, so, the law needs to be reviewed with the current reality for us to stop this illegal trading and other activities.
“They derived pleasure in paying peanut whenever they go before our mobile courts, which is why they still go back to the same spots the next day to continue their illegal trading,’’ the spokesman said.
However, he said that the board held a retreat to review its Act and the amendment had been submitted to legal experts for a review, adding that the final draft will be submitted to the National Assembly.
Ibrahim appealed to FCT residents to stop patronising people hawking on the street, pedestrian bridges, in the traffics, as this would discouraged them from operating in such unauthorised palaces.
AEPB calls on multinationals, corporate bodies to make Abuja clean
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) has called on multinational and corporate bodies to assist the board to make the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) a clean city.
Alhaji Baba Lawan, the Director of the board made the call while commissioning waste bins provided by the Rotary Club International at the Transcorp junction in Abuja on Wednesday.
Lawan said multinationals and corporate bodies should make it part of their corporate social responsibility to clean the FCT.
“This gesture is coming under corporate responsibility by rotary club and we are pleased to have this kind of provision in Abuja city.
“This is first of its kind and we need more of this in Abuja.”
He said that the waste bins would help to reduce wastes littered by passengers boarding vehicles in the area.
He said that the waste bins were provided by the rotary club in partnership with the AEPB to make the city clean.
“Transcorp Hilton junction was selected due to high density of population boarding vehicles from the area to different locations, especially during rush hours,” he said.
According to him, 10 of such waste bins will be mounted in some strategic highly populated areas in Abuja to make the city clean.
He said that AEPB had started sensitisation programme on electronic and print media as part of its efforts to make Abuja clean.
Dr Samuel Usman, the immediate past President of Rotary Club of Nigeria, Ministers Hill, said the gesture was more of sensitisation, adding that other organisations should replicate the gesture to make Abuja a clean city.
Usman said that the gesture would be extended to other satellite towns such as Nyanya, Lugbe, Karu among others.
“Our rotary club is handling a sanitation project at Jahi 2 where we are working with the community to ensure their drainages are clean, they wash their hands regularly among others.’’
Edited by Grace Yussuf
AEPB warns FCT residents against noise pollution
The Abuja Environmental Protection Agency (AEPB) has warned residents of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) against noise pollution otherwise they will face full wrath of the law.
Alhaji Baba Lawan, the Director of the agency gave the warning while briefing newsmen on Monday in Abuja.
He said that the agency had received numerous complaints by FCT residents on noise pollution from clubs, recreational centres among others.
The News Agency if Nigeria reports that noise is detrimental to human health, it increases stress level, high blood pressure sleeplessness.
Noise has long term effect on hearing, reduces performance at work and it increases irritability.
According to him, this is unacceptable, our laws are very clear AEPB is provided with a law to enforce noise pollution anywhere within the city and its territory.
“We will not keep quite over issue of noise pollution; where we get complaints of noise pollution we visit such areas to confirm and take action.
“Some FCT Residents are complaining that their children don’t sleep at night due to noise from loudspeakers used in some clubs and recreational centres, instead they sleep in the school when teachers are teaching them,” he said.
He advised users of loudspeakers in clubs and recreational centres, churches, mosques to ensure they provide insulation that could prevent noise pollution to avoid sanctions.
He said that the agency impounded some loudspeakers since 2018 till date, adding that some of the offenders would be arraign in AEPB mobile court or forfeit their gadget if they refused to show up at the court.
AEPB urges Nigerians to keep rivers free of plastics
Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) has urged Nigerians to keep oceans and rivers free of plastics to save fishes and sea birds, ultimately mankind that feed on both.
AEPB Head of Information and Outreach unit, Mallam Muktar Ibrahim, gave the advice in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Saturday.
Ibrahim was speaking on the Commemoration of the 2019 World Migratory Birds Day with the theme: ‘Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution’.
The 2019 World Migratory Birds Day holds on every May 11 to raise global awareness campaign on the need for the conservation of migratory birds and their habitats.
According to Ibrahim, oceans and rivers must be kept free of plastics to save the fishes and the sea birds.
“As the world marks the 2019 edition, we must ensure that we give practical backing to this year’s global theme.
“We should also ensure that the birds get a hospitable welcome, wherever their migration takes them,” Ibrahim said.
He said that people must stand with AEPB on its campaign against indiscriminate tree felling, as it destroys the natural habitat for forest creatures and contributes to climate change, global warming and recession of the oceans.
According to him, the leaves of trees and plants can serve as a non harmful alternative to plastics.
“AEPB will continue to campaign on waste segregation from source in order to minimize the quantity of inorganic wastes that are disposed into the environment and water bodies.
“Plastic pollution especially, is of constant concern because of the grave danger it poses to marine life and living things that derive nutrition from marine creatures, including man and seabirds,” he said.
Ibrahim recalled that the theme for the 2018 World Environment Day celebrated on June 5, was “Beat Plastic Pollution”.
“This was to highlight the potential danger of plastic on the environment and to elicit urgent positive action to mitigate it through a deliberate policy to stop the use of plastic entirely, especially the single-use plastics.
“These plastics clog water ways and end up in rivers and oceans and get ingested by fishes and end up on our dinner tables and the stomach of birds,” he said.
NHRC summons AEPB Director over alleged rape of women in Abuja
The National Human Rights Commission on Friday, summoned the Director of the Abuja Environmental Protection Board, (AEPB) over the recent alleged rape of women arrested after a raid in some parts of the FCT.
The Executive Secretary of the commission, Mr Tony Ojukwu said the director is to appear before the commission to brief it on the role of its officers in the recent raids on innocent citizens in the FCT and attending allegations of rape of those arrested.
The invitation followed a protest by a coalition of Civil Society Groups to the commission over what they described as a continuous violation and molestation on women by officials of government.
Leader of the delegation, Kemi Okenyodo of the Partners West Africa Nigeria said that they were worried over the recent raids and gender based violence against women by the Nigeria Police and agents of FCTA Joint Task Team.
According to her, these state agents appear to be specifically targeting women, while no males are arrested.
She called on the commission to set up an independent panel of inquiry into the events with a view to fishing out the culprits and punishing them appropriately.
She urged the office of the Vice President to issue a directive calling on all government agencies to cease the raids, unlawful arrests and gender based violence against women on suspicion of sex work.
Okenyodo further called on the Ministry of Women Affairs to ensure effective enforcement of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act, (VAPP).
Responding, Mrs Fatima Waziri-Adzer from the office of the Vice President said that the current administration would not tolerate any act of abuse of office.
She gave the assurance that those found culpable would be brought to justice to serve as a deterrent to others.
Speaking on behalf of the police, DCP Usman Umar, said that the recent happenings were unfortunate as it was sad to see law enforcement agents molesting citizens.
He said the police had opened investigations into the matter and the findings would be made public just as those found culpable would face the full wrath of the law.
The coalition represented a formal demand for action to the commission where it stated that over 100 women in Abuja had been recently molested by the Police and agents of the FCTA Joint Task Team.
The joint task team comprises the Department of Development Control, AEPB and the Social Development Secretariat.
edited by Sadya Hamza
AEPB expresses concern over activities of hawkers in FCT
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) has expressed concern over the activities of hawkers along major roads and streets of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Mr Muktar Ibrahim, Head of Information and Outreach Programme of the agency made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Abuja.
Ibrahim said that activities of the hawkers inside traffics had constituted threats to motorists and their own safety in the metropolis.
The AEPB official said as a means of checking the menace of the hawkers, security agents would keep arresting and prosecuting them in line with the laws of the FCT.
“We express concern over the risk being taken by these hawkers in their attempt to make brisk business from moving vehicles.
“You will see these people waving in and out of traffic, engaging in trading.
“Whenever they see men from the monitoring and the enforcement arms of the AEPB, they keep running up and down.
“This is another source of worry to the AEPB, as our monitoring teams carry out their operations,” he said.
He urged motorists and other road users to stop buying from the hawkers, saying that the roads and streets are not meant for commercial activities.
Stop converting bus stops, bridges, markets to public toilets – AEPB warns
The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), has warned members of the public to desist from converting bus stops, pedestrian bridges and market places to public toilets.
Mr Muktar Ibrahim, the Head of Information and Outreach, AEPB gave the warning in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria , on Tuesday in Abuja.
Ibrahim, who described such the act as an eyesore, said the prevalent issues of open defecation was becoming too alarming in the nation’s capital and, therefore, advised people to desist from it.
“Unfortunately, there are environmental vices which people are engaging in like open defecation, turning public facilities into private usage and this is something that the government is not taking it lightly.
“You will remember that President Muhammadu Buhari even declared a state of emergency recently on water and sanitation so, we will continue to emphasise and sensitise the public against the hazards of open defecation.
“You can imagine how people can turn bus stops, walkways and other public facilities to conveniences which is not proper, “ he said.
According to him, most of the sicknesses affecting the public can be traced to such practices by the members of the public.
Ibrahim said that the agency monitoring team was working 24 hours to ensure that the image of Abuja was maintained.
“We will keep monitoring and arresting those who contravene the law and we will keep sensitising the public on the kind of hazards such kind of activities constitute, “ he said.
He advised that public places such as plazas, banks, petrol stations among others were accessible to people for use whenever they are pressed.
The AEPB official also condemned the activities of petty traders who had converted pedestrian bridges to market places across the nation’s capital.
Meanwhile, a civil servant, Mr Victor Esin, told NNN that some bus stops in Abuja were no longer comfortable for passengers waiting for vehicles.
Esin, however, attributed the situation to lack of public toilet facilities in some strategic places in the FCT.
He, therefore, pleaded with the authority of the FCT to look into such challenges even as he described the act by the public as an eyesore to visitors in the FCT.
AEPB intensifies operations to clean Abuja city, says official
Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) says it has intensified its operations to ensure dirt-free environment in Abuja city.
AEPB Head of Information and Outreach Unit, Malam Muktar Ibrahim, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Tuesday.
He explained that the board had intensified its monitoring and supervisory roles to clean and evacuate wastes caused by strong breeze during the rainy period.
“AEPB has intensified its monitoring and supervisory roles in all the cleaning districts within the city centre to contend with the rainy season and the strong breeze that usually accompany it.
“The AEPB Director, Baba Shehu-Lawan, has instructed the district monitors and supervisors to intensify their oversight of all the areas under their jurisdiction to ensure that the cleaning contractors are alerted of any waste littered in their areas of coverage.
“So, as the standard routine cleaning duties continue, the board has increased its supervisory and monitoring roles in all the districts,’’ Ibrahim said.
According to him, The Intervention Unit of AEPB is fully revived to ensure cleanliness in any area where the contractors are seen to be slacking.
Ibrahim, who called on residents to dispose their wastes responsibly, urged them to be more conscious of the dangers of indiscriminate waste disposal, which could lead to flooding and outbreak of diseases such as cholera and diarrhea.
He restated the board’s commitment to guarantee a clean, safe and hygienic environment throughout the rainy season.
Ecologist urges AEPB to enforce waste disposal laws
Abuja, March 13, 2019 An Ecologist, Mr Abdullahi Aremu, has urged the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB)
to intensify efforts toward enforcing extant waste disposal laws to ensure dirt-free environment in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Aremu, who is the Director-General, Advocacy for Environmental and Sanitation Integrity, an NGO, made the call
in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Wednesday.
He said that the board should deal with those who litter the environment with garbage.
He added that “in the FCT, particularly in suburbs of Abuja, managing waste has become a major concern in spite of efforts by
government and private organisations in that direction.
“That is why it is a common sight today to see heaps of festering waste in many areas of FCT.
“Residential apartments, markets, waterways, highways, streets and undeveloped plots of land have been converted into waste
dumpsites for many households.”
The ecologists urged residents of the FCT to dispose waste properly to prevent water pollution.
He explained that “water pollution can occur from city streets where garbage and chemicals are not disposed properly.”
Aremu said that once water was polluted, it would become unsafe for consumption due to the dangerous or toxic materials in it.
He added that if contaminated, such water could lead to infections, sicknesses and even death when consumed.
“Water pollution has become a growing concern over the last century, as more and more waste is being disposed
into our oceans, rivers and lakes,” he said.
Residents urge AEPB to intensify campaign against clogged gutters
Residents urge AEPB to intensify campaign against clogged gutters
Some residents of FCT, on Wednesday urged the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) to intensify campaigns against clogged gutters to mitigate floods with the coming of the rains.
Mr Yahaya Garuba, an environmentalist and resident of Zuba, underscored the need for gutters to be clear of leaves and debris to prevent flooding during the rainy season.
Garuba said if gutters were not unclogged, drain outlets would dam up and rainwater would fill the gutters leading to overflow and eventually pulling the gutters loose.
“Water that pools in troughs will rot wood gutters and rust sheet-metal ones,’’ he said.
Also, Mr Micheal Emeka, a resident of Kubwa, on his part suggested that children should be taught the importance of clearing the home’s drainage systems.
“People should be educated on the effects the misuse of our drains can have on municipal wastewater systems and our environment,’’ Emeka said.
A resident of Mpape, Mrs Felicia William, said that people should always be mindful of things and objects that could cause blockage of drains.
“Stopping clogs is a battle fought on two fronts; first, people should be careful about what goes down the drain.
“Secondly, they need to take regular action to clear the small deposits that inevitably form in any drain,’’ William said.
Hajia Rasheedat Abdulrasak, a trader, urged AEPB to enforce the extant waste disposal laws and sanction those flouting the regulations.
AEPB urges residents to curtail littering of waste
By Deji Abdulwahab
Abuja, Feb. 18, 2019 (NNN) Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) on Monday urged residents in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to possess waste bins and sizeable polythene bags to support the efforts to curtail littering of wastes on streets.
Ibrahim urged residents to replace their damaged bins with new ones, adding that residents who had no bins should buy sizeable polythene bags to curtail littering waste on the street.
He recalled that AEPB had on Feb 13. held Waste Bin Enforcement Stakeholders meeting to sensitise residents on the need to replace the damaged bins.
“This has become personal responsibility of residents. Initially it used to be government responsibility because in the past, bins were free distributed to residents especially when AEPB started its operations in Abuja.
“Some residents are still expecting this to be the case but it has reached the situation where government can no longer buy as many bins based on the number of people in Abuja currently.
“That is why it is an individual responsibility for residents to get functional waste bins and ensure replacement of those bins when the old ones are damaged,’’ the information officer said.
He said that AEPB would have contracted a relevant company to supply the waste bins for residents but the board was facing challenge of not paying waste service charges enjoyed by residents.
“In our talks, we have actually played with the idea of supplying and deducting from the waste bins but then it becomes a difficult thing because people are not even prepared to pay waste service charges.
“This one is not like a levy; it is payment for waste service already enjoyed. So, we are having a problem with that.
“We also advise that they can buy sizeable polythene bags and use it to pack waste in interim,’’ Muktar said.
According to him, AEPB has also located roll-on bins in some strategic places in Abuja to curtail the incidence of littering waste on the street. (NNN)
Edited by Grace Yussuf
AEPB urges food vendors, hawkers to operate in authorised places
By Deji Abdulwahab
Abuja, Feb. 13, 2019 (NNN) Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) on Wednesday urged food vendors and hawkers to operate in authorised places to prevent the alleged extortion by its enforcement task force.
Ibrahim said that the traders should also engage markets managers to secure authorised places to operate.
He was reacting to the allegation by some food vendors and street hawkers that AEPB enforcement task force was extorting money from them.
He said that the complain of alleged extortion from the street hawkers and food vendors by its task force would continue if they failed to operate in authorised places.
“This complaint will never end the running battle between AEBP task force and hawkers, food vendors. My usual advice in this case is that he who comes with equity must come with clean hands.
“That is to say that the people who are accusing should not engage in any illegal activities in the first place because if they don’t engage in illegal activities, they will not create room where corrupt people may try to extort money from them.
“I want to say that in case where it is proven that money has been extorted, we are not going to spare our men involved in this kind of thing,’’ the information officer said.
According to him, it is not a matter of policy for our men to extort money from those who are breaking the law because those who are will face sanction to prevent the reoccurrence of that illegality.
“So, in that sense, our aim is to arrest people who break the law through their engagement of street begging, hawking or operating in prohibited places.
“The idea is to deter them from something that is wrong and to prevent them from coming to the same spot but in a situation where our officials collect money; it means that the aim is defeated.
“It means that those who indulge in this illegality will not be deterred. They will simply continue knowing that if they give out the money, they will be allowed to stay in their illegal places,’’ he said.
Ibrahim, who said that AEPB would not condone such act, urged the public and media to expose people engaged in such illegality with proof of evidence.
“To the best of my knowledge, I have not been involved in any case or rather I do not know any situation where AEPB staff have been accused and found to be guilty.
“Because of this, I have been telling people that if you want to make any accusation against any of these people, ensure that you have proof.
“If there is no proof, it is just word of mouth. It now becomes the word of accuser and word against the word of the accused. That is why it is difficult to prosecute such people,’’ he said.
The information officer also sought for collaboration of residents to support the AEPB efforts in arresting impostors of its enforcement officials.
“We have a case of our former staff who worked in the enforcement department. Because of their knowledge in enforcing the law they also pose as environmental officers to defraud the public because some people also make such accusation.
“Some of these people could either be past officers or not even members of AEPB. They go to selected places time to time, posing to be AEPB staff and collect money to allow these people to continue breaking the law.
“This does not help our job. In fact, it makes it more difficult because these people believe that they have paid money and money earns them the right to break the law,’’ he said.
According to him, it becomes difficult to deter such people from their wrong ways. (NNN)
Edited by Grace Yussuf