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26.01.2005 General News

V/R Parliamentary caucus refutes pollution story

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Aflao, Jan. 26, GNA- The Volta Regional Parliamentary Caucus has discounted media reports that the operations of Diamond Cement Ghana Limited (DCGL), was polluting the environment and endangering the lives of the people living around the factory.

A fourteen (14)- member delegation led by Mr Dan Abodakpi, Member of Parliament (MP) for Keta, who undertook a verification tour in the absence of a substantive Parliamentary Select Committee on Environment, said there was no cause for alarm.

The delegation which comprised Togbe Amenya Fiti V, Paramount Chief of the area, officials of the Ketu District Assembly including the District Chief Executive, Mr Linus Koffie and Lieutenant Colonel Agbenaza (RTD) former MP, interacted with the Management of the DCGL and surrounding communities.

Mr Abodakpi said there was a general perception among the people that dust emissions from the factory could expose them to diseases and suggested the need for remedial measures.

He said although the country would continue to create congenial atmosphere for foreign investments, it would not renege on the observance of safe environmental standards.

Mr Abodakpi asked the Company to demonstrate its corporate social responsibilities by undertaking more development projects in the area. Mr Valluri Adinarayana, Engineer of the DCGL said the Company had not violated the country's environmental laws.

He said the Company had reached an agreement with the communities to create a 50-metre green belt around the factory to check environmental pollution.

He said as part of its social responsibility the Company extended water to Duta, Fiokope, Dzatakope, Ziome and constructed a two-storey classroom block valued at 500 million cedis for the Denu community.

Mr Edwin Ahoney, Regional Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, told the Ghana News Agency that the Company was operating below the levels of dust emissions permitted by the Agency.

"The dust emission level required of the company is 230 micrograms per metre cube, but the it continues to do better with recent assessments revealing that it achieved 130 micrograms per metre cube."

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