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Published On: Tue, Nov 25th, 2014

AEPB to prosecute 37,000 residents over environmental bills

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By Mashe Umaru Gwamna

Following the commencement of wide-ranging 10-days trial of environmental defaulters in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) said no fewer than 37,000 residents are to face prosecution in the relevant FCT mobile courts over nonpayment of their waste collection bills.

Our Correspondent reports that the board, which also, prosecuted 6,600 for various environmental offences, said that some of them are also going to face the magistrate court, for their non chalet attitudes towards the board’s goals and vision of sustaining a healthier clean environment for all FCT residents.

According to the AEPB’s acting Director, Baba Shehu Lawan , who revealed this during one of the cort sittings, “ the administration has backlog of over 37,000 defaulters from various districts  of the Federal Capital Territory to be arraigned for nonpayment of  waste bills.

He reiterated that the Board had embarked on the massive trial of defaulters because of the negative impact on government’s revenue.

 He added that it was very clear that that the board will no longer condone any of such attitudes, so as to ensure sanity in the territory, as the compliance of residents is important, but those who refuse to comply with always be taken to environmental mobile court for prosecution.

Furthermore, Lawan, disclosed that in the ongoing massive trial of the defaulters, “over   487defaulters have been arraigned before the court, with 266 premises were sealed up for failing to appear in the court, while 220 cases are still standing trial in different courts in the Federal Capital City (FCC).

He called on FCT residents to cooperate with Board and its waste management partners, by regularly offsetting their bills for services to them, so as to avoid being prosecuted.

Meanwhile, one Mr. Aregbesola  Adeboye Joshua , of Ambi plaza wuse zone 5,who is standing trail argued that  AEPB  “instead of  charging tenants to pay environmental bills, as the owners of the plaza  should be made to do so.”

He lamented that the charges by the board do not commensurate with the services rendered.

 Peoples Daily gathered that the AEPB insisted that it will continue to partner with relevant private firms in the management of both solid and liquid wastes in the plazas and other premises, as government alone cannot do it.

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