Thursday, 10 December 2015

Lagos seals 53 churches, mosques and hotels

The Lagos State Government yesterday sealed 53 churches, mosques and hotels across the state over noise pollution and other environmental offences.
New Telegraph observed that some of the worship centres sealed include a bedroom apart-ment converted to a church, which, according to government, has been constituting nuisance to their neighbours.

The worship centres and facilities sealed include Christ Apostolic Church, Idimu; Corner Stone Youth Church, Unity of God Deliverance Ministry, Prophetic Intervention Ministry, Alalaye Mosque, The Lord Chosen Charismatic Church and Brazillian Mosque. Other facilities include: Sido’s Hotel, Oak Suites Hotel, Hammund Hotel, La Mia Lounge, Senator’s Suite and Burkingham Hotel, among others.

New Telegraph reports that popular IT outlet, X right, was also shut. The worship centres and hotels are located at Idimu, Maryland, Surulere, Ikotun, Agege, Onipanu, Ifako, Ogba, Okota, Ijegun, Ojodu Berger, Bariga, Gbagada Phase 2 and Alago Meji, Yaba areas of the state.

 Speaking after sealing the premises, the General Manager, Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA), Engr.Adebola Shabi, said the sealing was carried out after owners of the affected facilities failed to heed the warning of the agency.

He insisted that the sealed worship centres made more than the stipulated decibel of noise at different times of the day and night. Shabi said that residents in the shut premises petitioned the agency several times. According to him, churches were asked to remove all external speakers while mosques were also told to do so after the call to prayer, which he said must not exceed three minutes.

“You cannot have makeshift and say you want to be conducting services or night vigil there. Definitely, you will be disturbing your neighbours. So, the government won’t allow the use of makeshift as a church,” he said. He, however, added that the compliance level was increasing.

According to him, more Lagosians now understand the effect of noise and some of the religious houses now comply with the noise pollution regulation.

“Lagos has its own laws and standard on environment. During the day, it is 55 decibel and it is 45 decibel at night in residential areas. But in the industrial areas, it is 90 decibel during the day and 80 decibel at night. “There are some areas we call mixed areas because we have commercial and residential together; it is 65 decibel during the day and 55 at night.

When your noise exceed these limits, it becomes noise pollution,” Shabi explained. He noted that hotels were shut for failing to conduct and submit Environmental Impact Assessment report.

 Meanwhile, the state government has warned landlords against the use of pit toilets. The LASEPA boss said every landlord must comply with the modern sanitary toilet in line with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Shabi said the state government would not condone the usage of pit toilets in Lagos.


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