The Lagos State Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Samuel Babatunde Adejare has reiterated the commitment of the State Governmentto ensuring a clean, healthy sustainable environment for the well-being of the citizenry through the application of best practices in environmental management.
The Commissioner disclosed this today at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, Alausa, Ikeja, during 2016 Ministerial Press Briefing of the State Government in commemoration of the first year in office of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode.
He said in view of the mandate of the Ministry to initiate, formulate, regulate, set standard, evaluate and execute policies relating to environmental matters in the state,it has assiduously pursued this goal with unwavering zeal in the last one year of the present administration.
According to him, “We outlined various plans to attain a flood-free and environmentally safe and aesthetic State through efficient management of storm water and the deployment of innovative approach and strategies, which have so far, yieldedpositive results.”
He highlighted some of the measures that have been put in place to foster clean environment in the state to include surveillance visits to monitor compliance status of environmental violations; Issuance of over three hundred Abatement notices on environmental infractions to defaulters; Prosecution of violators of the environmental laws; Sealing of over 20 properties/facilities over illegal stacking of sand on drainage alignments and sale of building materials on the road/drains among others.
Dr. Adejare disclosed further that the state government has commenced the dredging/maintenance and inspection of on- going dredging works across the 20 Local Government Areas and 37 Local Council Development Areas in preparation for the year 2016 rainy season.
“Our de-flooding programme commenced at the end of last year’s rainy season. We intend to sustain and strengthen the previous strategy predicated on the tripod of Pre-Rain, Mid-Rain and Post-Rain programmes.”
The Commissioner however appeal to all residents in the state to desist from flagrant disregard for environmental laws and acts that can lead to flooding such as indiscriminate dumping of refuse in unauthorized places; non-evacuation of drains around homes and premises; Illegal building of structures on drainage alignments, road setbacks, and verges among others.
He averred that as part of strategies designed by the present administration to ensure environmental protection and sustainability, the State government through the Ministry of the Environment collaborated with the Federal Government in considering the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) reports for major developmental projects in the State.
“To this end, we have had the EIA Report of 8 major developmental projects reviewed.”
The Commissioner also noted the state has also collaborated with the Federal Government to carry out follow-up monitoring (Impact Mitigation Monitoring) on a total of 7 on-going developmental projects in the State.