By Kazeem Ugbodaga
The Lagos State Government on Thursday shutdown the Olusosun dumpsite in Ojota area of Lagos and ordered operators to make use of other landfill and dumpsites in the state.
The closure followed the fire disaster that destroyed about ten vehicles at at Olusosun dumpsite, Ojota, on Wednesday.
Commissioner for the Environment, Babatunde Durosinmi-Etti, who ordered the closure explained that the cause of the fire which emitted thick smokes from the Olososun dumpsite was the natural outcome of the trapped gasses from the waste, escaping to cause combustion, a situation which occured occasionally in dumpsites.
Etti stated that waste in dumpsites naturally emitted certain gasses that were occasionally released to cause combustion such as the one witnessed at the Olososun dumpsite on Wednesday.
The Environment Commissioner said that the State Government had responded swiftly to the situation by activating its emergency response units, including LASEMA, Lagos State Fire Service with support from Julius Berger to promptly put out the fire.
“Subsequently, the Olusosun dumpsite has been closed down for the main time, while operators are urged to make use of Epe Landfill and other dumpsites in Lagos State”, he said.
He recalled that the Lagos State Government had said repeatedly that the existing dumpsites at Olusosunin Ojota, Solous in Igando and Ewu Elepe were not sustainable and had mapped out plans for their phased closure, while it had concessioned the construction of Sanitary landfill in Epe and Transfer Loading Stations in different parts of the State.
According to him, government had also earmarked other landfills for construction in Ikorodu and Badagry as integral part of the infrastructure development component of the Cleaner Lagos Initiative which is the sustainable model in Solid Waste Management.
Durosinmi-Etti stressed that the administration of Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode in Lagos State had been proactive enough by identifying the gaps in the waste management system in the state and envisioning the Cleaner Lagos Initiative as the sustainable system of managing our waste as well as passing the Environmental Management and Protection Law 2017.
He urged Lagosians not to panic as the situation is obviously under control.