The Managing Director/ CEO of the Lagos Waste Management Authority, (LAWMA), Mr. Ibrahim Odumboni, has canvassed radical attitude change among Lagos residents, towards waste management and environmental practices.
He also charged health officers to take responsibility by rededicating themselves to duty, to restore the old glory of that profession, when they commanded both fear and respect among residents.
Odumboni made the observations at a one-day stakeholders’ meeting on Public Health Law 2015 and Environmental Management Protection Law 2017, organised by the Association of Waste Managers of Nigeria (AWAMN), in collaboration with LAWMA, in Ikeja.
He maintained that a key determinant of the success of waste management operations in the state was enforcement, hence the need for synergy among the various stakeholders, to work with a law that would enable seamless PSP operations for excellent results.
Odumboni said: “After what we do, even if we deploy the biggest resources, the biggest brain, the biggest mind into our day to day job, and we don’t have enforcement, definitely, there would be a lot of room for disorderliness”,
” Now, our major challenge in this sector, is the nonchalant attitude of our people, who are not ready to do what is right. We all know what a right thing is. It encompasses patronage of PSPs for proper disposal of waste, prompt payment of waste bills and separating waste at source, among others” , he stressed.
Odumboni further stressed, that all government agencies and officials saddled with enforcing the law, must work together to achieve a common purpose.
Speaking earlier, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, Dr Omobolaji Gaji, reiterated that environmental infractions would now be prosecuted at designated magistrate’s courts, urging all stakeholders to work in synergy to transform the environment.
In his contribution, the chairman of Lagos State House of Assembly Committee on Environment, Hon. Desmond Eliot, noted that the various environmental laws of the state have been collapsed into one document, adding that the Assembly would continue to strengthen the legal framework for issues of environment.
The President of AWAMN, Mr. David Oriyomi, in his keynote address, thanked the state government for dedicating many magistrates’ courts to the prosecution of environmental offences, promising that drawing on the government’s support, the PSP operators would work harder to deliver good service to Lagosians.
The external solicitor to AWAMN, Barr. David Fadile, who x-rayed both laws, noted that there were areas of contradictions, urging the State’s House of Assembly, to consider urgent amendments to such sections, to achieve desired objectives.
On the panel discussion, were the Chief Technical Officer of LAWMA, Dr. Olorunwa Tijani and head of Legal Unit of LAWMA, Barr. Rilwan Uthman, among others; with LAWMA’s executive Director Finance, Mr. Kunle Adebiyi, also in attendance at the event.