By Oludele Taiwo
A legal practitioner and a conservationist, Olivia Ihemeson, has lamented the poor awareness of the consequences of environmental degradation by activities such as dumping of refuse in the nearby stream/drainage, bush burning, indiscriminate and emissions from exhaust/explosives. She also lamented the destructive effects of using harmful herbicides in farming, discriminating falling of trees with no plans for replacement, radiation from living too close to a communication mast, and uniformed reclamation of wetlands by individuals, among others. Ihemeson, thereby canvassed for stronger legislation and enforcement of policy actions to protect the environment against degradation, especially in the Niger Delta region.
She stated that a modern conservation policy would help correct the mess that is currently affecting the environment. While referencing the soot pollution crisis in Port Harcourt, noting that this reflects governance failure and constitutes an intractable problem to all levels of government represented in the region. The lawyer added that citizens believe that the Federal Government had failed to make meaningful efforts aimed at honestly addressing issues that made the people of the region resort to armed struggle to fight their cause. According to her, “The citizens believe that the Federal Government has failed to make meaningful efforts aimed at honestly addressing the issues, which made people of the region resort to armed struggle to fight their cause”.