Ike Nnachi, Abakaliki
The Member representing Afikpo North West in the Ebonyi State House of Assembly, Kingsley Ikoro, has expressed sadness over the number of collapsed buildings, cracked buildings, health and other environmental hazards witnessed in
Ameta Agba in Ibii/Ozizza autonomous community following stone blasting by a mining company.
Mr Ikoro who expressed the concern at the floor of the State Assembly during its sitting noted that many have been hospitalised while others have lost their homes and properties and called for immediate action against further blasting less than a kilometer to the residential areas.
Mr Ikoro, who is the Leader of the Assembly, described the action of the company as wicked and inhuman.
He accused the quarry company of blasting stones less than just one kilometer to residential homes against the mining regulation template of the Ebonyi State Government.
“The action of the company can best be described as wicked and man’s inhumanity to man. You cannot have a quarry site where you do blasting less than a kilometer to where there are residential areas. Quarry sites are supposed to be situated at least three kilometers away from residential areas.
Mr Ikoro also expressed the concern that apart from causing environmental and health hazards to the people of the area, the company also takes the mineral resources gotten from the host community to build roads in other communities neglecting the host community.
“It’s so sad that the quarry company will destroy the houses of the residents, put their lives in danger, yet take the mineral resources gotten from the community elsewhere to do roads while that of the host community are death traps. That is simply wicked.
He said he has also reported to the relevant regulatory authorities who visited the site to ascertain the level of damage.
“The authorities have visited the site and I am waiting for the report of the authorities before we take further action.
“Though from the report so far gotten, the company promised to do the roads of the community but we are not going to dwell on promises, we want actions.
“There are houses that have collapsed, many others have cracked and I have insisted on abiding by the mining regulations. They should follow the template the government of Ebonyi State brought out for registration of quarry sites.
“It becomes more pathetic and unfortunate each time it rains. The people of the area do not make use of the rain water because it’s always black in color.
“Those who take the risk of using it end up in the hospital. The water is already polluted. The mineral resources in the community has become more harm than good to the people,” he added.