Reps threaten to sanction minister, NEMA DG for shunning summons

The House of Representatives Committee on Environment, has threatened the Minister of Environment and the Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) with sanctions,,if they fail to appear at its next sitting.

Both were expected to appear at a public hearing by the Committee to address the devastating issues of gully erosion, perennial flooding, and desertification that plague many communities in Nigeria, but failed to turn up on Tuesday.

The hearing was to address the adverse impacts of gully erosion in several communities across six states, namely, Anambra, Bayelsa, Delta, Lagos, and Ondo; as well as the desertification disaster in Kano and the flooding disaster in Bauchi State.

Chairman of the Committee,  Hon Pondi Gbabojor said the Committee was displeased by their behaviour as it was the second time they were shunning the invitation to appear, as he directed the clerk of the Committee to write to both of them, saying such attitude would no longer be condoned.

“Clerk do a letter to the Ministry of Environment and NEMA and express the displeasure of the committee because this is the second time they are not showing up and it would not be condoned again”, he said.

He stressed that the issue to be addressed was of urgent concern to the wellbeing of Nigerians, adding that the concerns were brought to the attention of the House, following the deliberation of some motions which were accordingly referred for further legislative actions.

“As the Committee on Environment, alongside other pertinent committees of the House, we recognize the urgent need to address these challenges comprehensively and to chart a course toward sustainable solutions that will protect our environment and provide relief to the affected individuals and communities,” he stated.