AEPB serves hawkers, corporate beggars quit notice, seizes 3,000 used tyres

The Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), on Friday, removed over 3,000 thousand tyres used as road barricades, warning hawkers, corporate beggars and commercial sex workers, to leave the city or face prosecution.

Mr Braimah Osilama, Director of the AEPB, said this in Abuja, while addressing newsmen on how the board would be strengthened to achieve its mandates.

Osilama reiterated the board`s commitment to ensuring that street traders, beggars and other group of people, constituting environmental nuisance, as well as every form of waste, were removed from the FCT.

According to him, the board had removed over 3,000 tyres in the city, the exercise started few days ago and we are still on it.

“We want to ensure that all the tyres used as barricade were removed, most people are using them for demarcation of roads.

“They don’t want people to pass through the area and these tyres are wastes, they have no business in a modern city at all. So, we are already removing them they should use proper signage.

“Tyres create nuisance, such as public health implications, because they are consuming water inside during the rainy season and it becomes a living place for mosquito’s thereby causing sicknesses and diseases to our health.

“They should simply use concrete materials to demarcate the area not using tyres.

“We have discussed with some of the security agents that used tyres to demarcate roads to their offices and they are ready to cooperate with us,’’ he said.

Osilama said that the AEPB was committed to ensuring that it worked in line with the FCT administration, which was all about creating a first class city similar to others around the world.

He said that the the AEPB had a new law that would address the prosecution of defaulters of any kind of act, adding that the law had passed first and second stages at the National Assembly and was ready for public hearing.

Osilama decried the previous law as not being as stiff as it should be, given that when an offender committed any offense and was taken to our mobile court, the person would be sentenced with an option fine of N500 only.

“The offender will easily pay the fine and go back to his or her normal act. But, with this new law it will be stiffer and I think it will help us achieve our mandates effectively,’’ he said.

Osilama said that the board would ensure that the hawkers, street traders as well as corporate beggars, were removed from the city, adding that the issue had become a huge challenge to the board.

“No matter how we remove them they will still come back, is a big challenge and what people don’t really know is that these hawkers are causing security challenges, some of them are engaged in stealing and other crimes.

“So, I am appealing to those who buy from the hawkers to stop patronising them, rather they should go to shops and buy whatever thing they intend to buy, it is safer and healthier.

He said that the AEPB was also planning to strengthen action against noise pollutants, while warning all the owners and operators of event centres, parks, gardens, religious places, and other facilities within the FCT areas to abide by the law.

“We have laws guiding all these acts, the law says that such assembles should not create nuisance or disturb other residents, so we want to strengthen the act,’’ he said.

He said that the AEPB was also planning to commence house-to-house inspection exercise, adding that the effort was to ensure that people lived in safe conditions.

“The essence of the inspection is to educate people on the importance of always using their waste bins, and as this will help the residents keep their environments clean and healthy.

“I also want to appeal to all the residents to ensure that they paid their service bills appropriately to avoid embarrassment’’, Osilama added.

Mr Kaka Bello, Assistant Director, Monitoring and Enforcement department, said that the board had been on the exercise of removing used tyres in the FCT for the past four days, adding that it was a continuous exercise.

Bello said that the AEPB had gone to areas such as Asokoro, Air-port Road, Central Areas and Apo district, adding that the tyres were taken to landfilling sites in Gusa Village in the FCT for recycling.

He said that the issue of people not abiding by the rules and regulations of the board was a huge problem, adding that the board would continue to ensure that offenders were prosecuted accordingly. (NAN)

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