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Published On: Thu, Apr 10th, 2014

Kaduna inhabitants accuse refinery of discharging ‘poisonous gas’

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refinery of dischargingBy Ocheiga Enoch Oloche with agency report

Some residents of Kaduna metropolis have expressed worry over the foul air coming from the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company (KRPC), which is polluting the environment. They said the odour from the gas flared by the refinery is posing a lot of health challenges on the residents of Tsaunin-Kura GRA, Unguwan Bulus, Kantin Aga and Unguwan Matari.

Mr. Jonah Isua, a resident of Tsaunin Kura GRA, said the odour from the substances being released by the KRPC was making breathing difficult for residents. “If we are eating, it is like we are swallowing the substance along with the food. If you keep water in an open basin it will be covered by soot-like substance. “ Every morning and evening, the gas always covers the area like dangerous mist, making it difficult for us to breath,’’ he said.

Grace Tachio, a poultry farmer at Kamazoo, said the release was affecting her birds, making them not to eat well. “Chicks are very easy to contract diseases and with this kind of smell from gas flaring it will kill them all.” We are calling on the government and management of Kaduna refinery to take immediate measures to stop the gas flaring, because what we are inhaling is poisonous and capable of killing us all.

Ronti George, who is another resident, said, “ Industrial pollution now deserves due attention from environmentalists in the state. “I am surprised that this has been happening for weeks now and nobody has said or done anything about it.’’

Malam Sherif Ibrahim, the Coordinator of National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) in the state, stressed that the agency was already looking into the problem. “The issue of gas flaring is affecting the environment and we are on top of the situation. We are assuring the residents of the area that we will meet and advise the management of the refinery on the problem,“ he said.

Responding to the complaints, Alhaji Abdullahi Idris, the Public Affairs Manager of KRPC acknowledged the problem but said measures had been taken by the company to address it. However, he said the substance being released into the environment is not poisonous and therefore not harmful. “It was released inadvertently. We have identified the source of the leak and we are in the process of clean up.’’

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