BREAKING: Talks to resolve Gunjur Environmental issue held
The Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Natural Resources (MECCNAR) has invited stake holders to a consultative meeting on Wednesday, 12th July 2017 at the Ministry's Conference Hall in Banjul. According to our sources, this meeting is a follow up to a similar meeting at the Ministry between the Environment Ministry, National Environment Agency (NEA) and Golden Lead Company Ltd on 4th July 2017. @Gunjur - The Voice of Dabanani understands that these meetings are being organised to " find amicable solutions to the ongoing law suit filed against the fish processing company (Golden Lead Company Ltd), for allegedly discharging factory waste product into the sea, which presumably resulted in damaging the surrounding marine lives and ecosystem" It could be recalled that in June of this year, the National Environment Agency filed a four counts lawsuit against the Golden Lead Company Ltd for breaches of Gambia Environmental Laws. The company denied those charges and the case subsequently adjourned to 4th July 2017. On May 30th, President Adama Barrow issued a statement on the environmental pollution issue and said the following: "I have followed developments relating to the environmental pollution of some of our coastal villages in The Gambia, particularly in the area of Gunjur Beach. My government officials have visited the Golden Lead Company in Gunjur and have concluded that the company has not respected proper environmental requirements as they are expected to under correct waste management and disposal practices. It has also been brought to my attention that there has been some illegal fishing in the area, with some fishermen using the wrong equipment. This is resulting in the catching and dumping of juvenile fish along the beach." However, on 22nd June, the government of The Gambia though the Director of Press and Public Relations at the Office of the President, Amie Bojang-Sissoho, announced in a Press Release that government has "reached an out of court" settlement with the Golden Lead Company Ltd to the dismay of local and international environmentalists. It is hoped that today's meeting will produce some positive results in finding a lasting solution to this environmental crisis in the coastal settlement of Gunjur. This is a developing story and we will report on the outcome of today's meeting when all the facts of the meeting are known.