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27.02.2009 General News

Fineprint industry in Tema shut down


Personnel of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), on Friday shut down the Fineprint Industry, in Tema, for operating without operational permits.

The company, which produces exercise books and other paper products, including toilet rolls has been operating since 1992 without Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) permit and fire certificate.

The industry that has over 200 employees has also since 2007 defaulted in the payment of Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA)'s waste management fee.

Mr Lambert Faabeluon, Deputy Director of EPA, in-charge of the Tema Metropolis, who led the team that was supported by officials from TMA and the Department of Factory Inspectorate to close the factory, told GNA that the owner, a Nigerian, refused to regularize his operations after several warnings.

He advised factory owners to acquire EIA permit, which ensures the checking of solid, liquid and gas producing equipments and occupational and health hazards associated with their operations.

Mr Faabeluon said that apart from failing to comply with warnings, the construction of another plant has been started on the premises of Fineprint without permit.

Mr Jones Sarpong, Tema Regional Fire Officer, said the Service has advised management of the company to acquire a fire certificate since 2007.

He said that operators of companies, schools, hotels, fuel stations and other facilities were required by law to obtain fire certificates to ensure the safety of workers and property.

Mr Sarpong said that in 2008 the Service closed down some companies in the Tema Metropolis for failing to comply with the law.

Mr Abdulai Mahamadu, Head of the TMA Waste Management Department, said that apart from operating under unhygienic conditions, Fineprint owed the assembly over GH¢ 1,000.

The Head of the Department said TMA would summon the company before court for accumulating refuse on its premises, a situation which according to him could result in an outbreak of communicable diseases.