The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Abia State, Mr Iheanyi Ubani has described the rising confirmed cases of the dreaded COVID-19 in Africa as a fall out of poor sanitation and neglect on COVID-19 protocols.
Ubani represented by the Director Pollution Control and Environmental Health, Abia state Ministry of Environment, Ikechukwu Ukaegbu when he spoke to newsmen explained that the state government was desirous of a clean environment in order to make Abians to remain healthy and ward off the pandemic.
The Permanent Secretary tasked the residents of the state to endeavour to take the monthly sanitation exercises seriously, saying that the government will not fail to punish environmental offenders to serve as deterrent to others.
He therefore urged Abians and indeed Nigerians to strictly adhere to the COVID-19 protocols, now that the second wave of the deadly Coronavirus is here with us, even as he maintained that personal hygiene, wearing of face masks, using sanitizers and regularly washing of hands, keeping their environment clean etc as the better ways to avoid contracting COVID-19.
On the celebration of last Christmas, Ubani commended Abians at home and in the Diaspora for celebrating the Yuletide and New Year without recording any environmental hazard and asked them to continue to ensure that their homes and surroundings are always tidy in order to stay away from the pandemic.
On the December 2020 clean up exercise, the Permanent Secretary described it as commendable and stated that more efforts would be put in place to ensure that more people participate in the exercise this year, 2021 in all parts of the state.
On his assessment of the cleanup exercise, Ubani said that the ministry is looking at the operational capacity of workers than the number that came out for sanitation exercise, although acknowledged that the Local Government election had its impact on the exercise.
He revealed the state government efforts to boost the aesthetic beauty of the capital and commercial city of Aba, adding that the yuletide was a good season through which many developmental works were executed including re asphalting of roads and repainting of the road median.
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.