NGO charges government to support electronic waste recycling
A non-governmental organisation, E-Waste Relief Foundation, has called on the Federal Government to create enabling environment to help professional electronic waste recyclers thrive, and contribute to the national economy.The NGO made the appeal at a capacity enhancement programme to enlighten electronic retailers, manufacturers, and other stakeholders in Yaba, Lagos.
Speaking at the programme, the President of E-Waste Relief Foundation, Ifeanyi Ochonogo, said it was time the Nigerian Government began to see the need to support the growth of the industry considering the increasing rate of electronic wastes in major cities like Lagos.
Ochonogo, who appealed to the executive and legislative arm of government to include electronic waste recycling into the national curriculum said: “E-waste will the next good thing to happen revenue generation for the country if embraced.
“E-waste is something that needs to be brought into the national curriculum. It has a lot of benefits; it also brings a lot of money into our economy, creating jobs and exportation opportunities.
“There are a lot of valuable materials in a lot of these devices that had been used and kept aside, the problem is how to unravel values in it. That is why its inclusion in the national curriculum is needed and important.“Electronic waste recycling is a crucial way of boosting the economy if we take advantage on all the spoilt and out of use electronic devices around us. it holds the key to the future and we should start now.”
Ochonogo advised members of the public to desist from burning of electronic devices without the proper knowledge of how handle them, as they contain toxic substances capable of poisoning human, ecosystem and the environment at large. He explained: “Cancer causes the majority of deaths and cancer is mostly from e-waste when you consider the number of films used to manufacture the electronic products people inhale, especially when electronic materials are burnt. It is dangerous”
Also, Vice President of E-Waste Relief Foundation, Stephen Amos, said it was disheartening that “these electronic waste that ought to be advantageous to us are becoming a menace.”Amos who stated that over a million tons of electronic waste are being generated across the country, with 40% of them coming from Lagos annually questioned why the government has not created an avenue for local e-waste recyclers to export the wastes.
He noted that countries like China were already taking advantage of 3Rs of reducing, recycling and reusing electronic wastes for creating jobs and improving the lives of its citizens.Amos added that the programme was organised to transfer knowledge of electronic waste to stakeholders and the benefits it portends in job creation, especially exportation.