By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
Concerned by the role of the State Ministry of Environment at ensuring a cleaner, healthier, safe and sustainable environment, the Ogun State House of Assembly has urged the Governor Dapo Abiodun to appoint another substantive Commissioner for the Ministry.
The Commissioner of Environment, in the state, Abiodun Abdul-Balogun, was suspended, following allegation of an alleged attempt to rape a 16-year old secondary school student.
The Speaker, Rt. Hon. Olakunle Oluomo, made the appeal while responding to the submission of a member representing Yewa North II and the Chairman, House Committee on Environment, Wahab Haruna.
He intimidated the Assembly on the need to fill the vacuum created by the absence of a political head for the Ministry, which had been affecting some of the programmes, performances, and output of the Ministry.
Oluomo while clarifying that the appointment of political office holders remained the prerogative of the governor, but having considered the need to swiftly move to ensure the promotion of safe and healthy environment, there was a need for the appointment of a new commissioner to take charge of the ministry.
Such an appointment, the Speaker added would allow for more robust coordination and administration of the ministry towards harnessing all strategies in tackling all environmental hazards including flash flood alert which had since been issued by Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET).
Calling for improved efforts and synergy amongst related agencies handling environmental issues to reduce the adverse effects of the perennial flooding in some parts of the state, Oluomo equally admonished residents to adopt an attitudinal change by not dumping refuse in drainage channels or erecting structures on waterways.
He urged those living on a plain level prone to flooding to relocate in line with NIMET advice.
Earlier, Haruna stated that the ministry which had been without a commissioner for about six months required a substantive head to achieve optimum performance.