By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi
Governor Bala Mohammed on Monday commissioned the first of its kind in Bauchi State, an environmental science laboratory designed for a test of a minimum of 15 parameters of each of the core environmental components.
He said that the modern environmental science facility will serve as a reference centre for testing the quality of core environmental components which include water, soil and plants.
Bala who commissioned the project at the premises of the State Environmental Protection Agency (BASEPA), explained that it will also serve as a one-stop-solution centre for analyzing and safe custody of samples gathered from the environmental scan.
The Governor therefore directed BASEPA to conduct environmental scan for the state to highlight both existing and anticipated environmental problems across the 20 Local Government Areas of the state.
According to him, the move is to identify vulnerable groups, measure the magnitude of the problems, proffer solutions in accordance with the Best Management Practices (BMP), and provide costs estimates for implementation of the proffered solutions.
“I feel highly honoured to be in the premises of BASEPA, and welcome everyone to this very important occasion which is the first of its kind in the history of our dear State”, he said, stressing that the sophistication associated with the installed capacity in the laboratory allows for a test of a minimum of 15 parameters of each of the core environmental components.
“This is, but a platform for enriching lives in the context of a well-protected environment hence, the aspiration of every progressing society. We do everything within the context of the environment.”
The governor observed that no sustainable development could be achieved without being mindful of the environment, hence his administration is not only safeguarding the environment, but also improving it for future generation.
He also recalled that his administration inherited unwholesome environment from the previous administration, saying however the state government has so far recorded gigantic improvement in waste management through construction of modern and durable waste collection centres.
“It is strong fact that makes environment our priority. Government knowing fully well the need for evidence and empirical data in dealing with emerging environmental problems, we join the global trend of responding to issues based on scientific facts.”
Bala disclosed that the state government is currently formulating favourable policies that will clearly outline and inform the citizens of the state about their roles and responsibilities in ensuring clean environment.
He further explained that the policies are not for once initiated to inconvenience anyone, but his administration deemed it necessary to involve stakeholders to maximally contribute in the journey of ensuring sustainable development.
He said the draft of Bauchi State Waste and Pest Management Policy which is currently under review by relevant stakeholders and recent directives for environmental sanitation exercise in the entire state are parts of effort to achieve clean environment.
On the award of excellence, he received having rated Bauchi state as the cleanest state in the North East sub-region by “Clean-Up Nigeria”, the governor expressed gratitude to the organization for the honour and assured of sustaining the development.
Also speaking, the State Commissioner for Housing and Environment, Hamisu Muazu Shira assured Governor Bala Mohammed of the total support of the Ministry for effective implementation of his policies and programmes in the sector.
On his part, Director General of BASEPA, Dr. Kabir Ibrahim told the governor that already a number of development partners have declared interest to partner with the agency for environmental management.
The Registrar, Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria, Dr. Yakubu Mohammed Baba who also spoke at the occasion, decorated Governor Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed with the Award of fellow of the Council.