EPA not interested in checking noisy church-Dansoman residents
5/6/2012 6:30:12 PM -
Accra, May 6, GNA - After a number of unsuccessful attempts to make the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to check the noisy activities of a church in Dansoman, some residents have concluded the Agency is uninterested in pursuing the case.
Though the EPA seeks among other things to prevent, reduce, and as far as possible, eliminate pollution and actions that lower the quality of life, the aggrieved residents in Accra's suburban, at the weekend alleged that an official at the Complaint Section of the Accra Head Office of the body has an ulterior motive for not following the case.
Nana Yaw Sasu, a resident told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that he filed and submitted a complaint in December 2011, on behalf of the residents disturbed by the excessive and incessant noisy religious activities of Daniel Nii Ayi Okine, Leader and Founder of Success International Gospel Church, said the EPA official had failed to work on the case.
He said after several visits to the EPA, he finally met the lady officer in charge of complaint in March 2012 at the Millennium Block, where the Complaint Office is located, who told him he should follow up on the case at the Amasaman office of the Agency.
She explained that the Accra Complaint Office of the EPA had been relocated to Amasaman.
Mr Sasu said another official asked him to go back to inquire of the status of his case which he did on April 30, this year.
He said on that day, he visited the office at different time intervals before he finally met a lady (who was later identified as a service person) at the Complaint Office who showed him the book containing records of complaints made since last year to date.
Mr Sasu said his case had not been recorded and could not be traced.
Determined to pursue the case, he said he went to the office again on Thursday, May 3 and met the same lady officer.
Mr Sasu claimed that the lady told him that he 'the complainant had an unpleasant attitude', which she failed to explain, and that was the reason why she had asked him to go to Amasaman.
'The lady told me that 'you see; the problem I have with you is that you have an attitude, and if you have an attitude, you will get an attitude, go to Amasaman and follow up on the case!' '
It is to be recalled that on November 8, 2011 the GNA reported that some residents at Dansoman, had appealed to the Accra Metropolitan Authority (AMA)) and the EPA to take action against Okine over excessive noise making.
GNA's inquiries and trip to the church's premise revealed that those whose houses are closed by can neither carry out simple conversations nor make phone calls during the hours that the church operates on Sunday, Tuesdays and Fridays.
The church carry out its religious activities in a wooden structure behind the host Estate.
'Sometimes the church carry out all week revivals, all night services and prayer and singing sessions aside their weekly meeting days,' Yaw, a married man with two children, told the GNA.
According to him when the church started its operations, some members living on the Acalypha Street, a street before the church's premise is sited, reported their activities to the Dansoman Police Station, but few days later the religious group intensified its noise nuisance in defiance to the police authorities and the affected residents.
'Since then the church has been insinuating and rebuking us during preaching and prayer sessions calling down the Holy Ghost Fire and thunder to consume us.'
Until recent times, Dansoman Estates, the acclaimed largest Estates in West Africa, had been known for its peaceful and serene environment.
Residents now are inundated by series of uninterrupted noise nuisance carried out by drinking bar operators and spinners with some charismatic churches being the worst offenders.
Noise making have been identified to pose health risk to victims and these dangers include hearing impairment, deafness, hypertension, sleeplessness, mental disorder and abortion.
Some health experts indicate that exposure to excessive noise can induce premature ejaculation and lead to cardio vascular illness.