COPP urges EPA to carry out Environmental Impact Assessment
10/1/2012 1:45:23 AM -
Takoradi, Sept. 30, GNA - Members of the Coastal Platform for PeaceBuilding (COPP) has called on the Ghana Gas Company to ensure proper Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was carried out before the construction of the Gas Pipeline at Atuabo and its adjoining communities in the Western Region.
The COPP members said communities along the area where the Gas Pipeline and the Plants would be situated were agitating and therefore called on authorities to as a matter of urgency visit the communities for proper negotiations and education.
The COPP was established by the West African Network for Peace Building, (WANEP-GHana), and tasked with the responsibility of identifying possible human security threats that may be associated with the Oil and Gas find and to initiate resolutions as part of preventing conflicts and possible violence in the country.
Its members are made up of the security agencies, the oil companies, chief fishermen, district assemblies, youth leaders and women groups from the six coastal districts of the Western Region.
According to the COPP information gathered revealed that no EIA has been done since the proposed site was chosen, adding that, "the Gas Plant and pipelines pass through Asanda, Atuabo and Anokye communities, which are less than one kilometer apart and any mishap would be a great misfortune for the people of the area".
The COPP at a Meeting in Takoradi also identified indiscriminate sale of lands and bias in award of scholarship by Tullow and its British Council partners as also possible threats to socio-economic security of the districts and the region as a whole.
Mr. Asmah Arthur, Secretary to the Nzema Youth Association told the GNA that constant call on the EPA to carry out the EIA has proved futile with the excuse that the EPA had to stop the EIA since the Ghana Gas Company was looking for a new site for the project.
He said putting such a delicate facility in the midst of the indigenes was untoward since it puts life and property at a greater risk.
Mr. Arthur entreated stakeholders involved to look beyond today and put in place measures that could secure as well as safeguard the existence of the affected communities.
Mr. Justin Bayor, National Network Coordinator of WANEP-Ghana said the COPP was a platform for consensus building and entreated the authorities to act swiftly in the interest of peace and national cohesion.