Lagos Govt Puts Stringent Environmental Measures, Reopens Trade Fair Markets, Alaba International

The Lagos State government, led by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has reopened the Alaba International Market as well as a few other markets at the Trade Fair Complex in Ojo.
Due to poor waste disposal, unpaid waste bills, and other environmental infractions, the Lagos State Government had earlier closed the markets.
However, Tokunbo Wahab, the Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, said in a statement on Saturday that the decision to reopen the markets was made following a careful assessment and the application of stringent environmental regulations.
He went on to say that the markets were not reopened until the environmental issues had been addressed, rejecting any notion that there were political reasons for the shutdown. Wahab noted that the market’s temporary closure was a necessary measure to ensure a clean and healthy environment in the vicinity of commercial establishments.
“I state emphatically that the closure of those markets had no ethnic or political motives as it was done to ensure cleanliness and environmental sustainability for the good of all residents.
“These standards were set to guarantee that businesses in the state operate in a manner that is not detrimental to the environment and the well-being of the people,’’ Wahab said.
He reiterated the significance of maintaining a harmonious balance between commerce and environmental health, adding that the enforcement would be continuous as the government would not hesitate to seal any market or corporate facility found wanting.
Commenting on the reopening of the markets, Managing Director of Lagos Waste Management Authority, Dr Muyiwa Gbadegesin, said it worked with market officials to ensure the attainment of environmental standards. He said it was important for markets to operate in a manner that was economically viable and environmentally responsible.
“We have standards that each market in the state has to comply with to make our business environment clean and healthy for buyers and sellers.
“These include proper waste management, zero tolerance for open burning of waste, and zero tolerance for dumping of wastes in the drainage channels. Others are the engagement of market policing personnel to monitor market sanitation, and observance of distance from road setbacks, medians, and market surroundings to avoid indiscriminate dumping.
“We must also ensure the eradication of street trading and trading on road medians and shoulders, which obstruct the free flow of traffic.
“Tariffs must also be fully paid as any violation of the stated regulations would attract penalties and possible subsequent closure of offending markets,’’ he said
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