From Everest Ezihe, , Owerri
Worried by the environmental health implications of poor handling of hazardous waste products, Prof. Chidozie Uwalaka has patriotically advised the Federal Government of Nigeria to ensure that only accredited consultants of Federal Ministry of Environment are used in the realisation and enforcement of the policy.
Prof.Uwalaka who’s an American trained but Imo State born Environmental Management expert based in America but Lectures at College of Arts and Science, University of Francisco, USA disclosed this in Owerri on Monday at one of the prestigious hotels while delivery lecture titled – Hazardous Waste Management, A way forward for Nigeria, organized by the newly inugurated Nigeria League of Environmental Management, Imo State council.
According to him”in line with the new world order, the Federal Government of Nigeria must be aware who the oil companies, hospitals, banks, industries, tertiary institutions etc sales or manages their hazardous waste like solar batteries, hospital waste equipments and other hazardous waste as It’s globally recommended for countries to make use of accredited consultants from their Ministry of Environment because of their expertise and stringent conditions they are compelled to give in the over all benefits of the society” he noted.
The waste management expert further more advised the Federal Government on the need to be wary of most of those that were recognized by her relevant Agencies like National Environmental Standard And Regulations Enforcement Agency, NESREA as accredited agents, many of them he reported, employs quacks and believes in short cuts at the detriment of the society.
He expressed dismay that within the 21st century, the Nigerian government seems not to be committed to the ideals of managing hazardous waste despite it’s societal implications unlike other advanced countries of the world.
Prof. Uwalaka further reiterated the need for all the tiers of government in Nigeria to give priority attention to matters concerning hazardous waste as a strategic means of reducing air pollution and building environmental friendliness.
Earlier, Dr. Godwin Ofoegbu, the council chairman said the essence of the seminar is to create awareness of the organization, it’s role in nation’s development, form collaborative partnership with all the stakeholders and to give a strategic road map to the federal government.
Ofoegbu decried the idea of using quacks in hazardous waste management and further advised the Federal Government to give sole authorization to Federal Ministry of Environment in issuance of certificates to accredited consultants as means of sanitizing the system.