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Society advocates laws for petrochemical waste disposal

The Nigerian Thoracic Society (NTS) has called on the Federal Government to enact laws that would compel petrochemical companies to properly dispose the waste product of their refining process.

Nigerian Thoracic Society
L-R: President of Nigerian Thoracic Society, Professor Etete Peters; former Chief Medical Director of University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Professor Rowland Ndoma-Egba (middle); and Chairman of Cross River State House Committee on Health, Dr Ekpo Bassey, during the Annual General Meeting/Scientific Conference of the society on Thursday in Calabar

President of NTS, Prof. Etete Peters, made the call on Thursday, November 21, 2019 in Calabar, Cross River State, during the Annual General Meeting/Scientific Conference of the society.

Peters, a former Chief Medical Director, University of Uyo Teaching Hospital, explained that the negative impact of air pollution in Nigeria had caused adverse effects to citizens.

According to him, reports of black sooths covering the city of Port Harcourt still posed a danger to the lives of the people in that city.

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He called on relevant stakeholders to take drastic action to ameliorate the effects of the sooths on the innocent residents of the affected communities.

“We are calling on the Federal Government to enact laws that will compel petrochemical companies to properly dispose the waste products of their refining process.

“Secondly, the household air pollution has assumed a frightening dimension in Nigeria, with most households resorting to the use of cheaper sources such as biomass and fossil fuels for cooking with the attendant indoor pollution.

“The Federal Government is hereby urged to revisit the issue of clean stove initiative launched by the previous administration, whereby households will be provided with gas cooking stoves at a cheaper and affordable rate,” he said.

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The President called on all members of the NTS in the country to be in the front burner of championing the fight against respiratory disease burden in the country.

Chairman of the event, Prof. Rowland Ndoma-Egba, said that the environment was important to the growth and survival of all living beings.

Ndoma-Egba, a former Chief Medical Director, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, said the government should be very proactive in waste collection and disposal to avoid outbreaks of dangerous organisms.

“If some of these refuse gets into water supply; we will have various forms of water borne diseases that can affect us negatively,” he said.

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Chairman of the Local Organising Committee, Prof. Chibueze Njoku, said that the focus of the conference was to bring the society in line with the current happenings in the ecosystem.

Njoku said that the conference would harness ideas on how to create a healthy environment for people to live in and to enhance the role of doctors in the system.

The NTS is a non-profit professional and scientific society for respiratory medicine committed to the prevention and treatment of respiratory diseases through research, education, patient care and advocacy. 

By George Odok

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