The Lagos State House of Assembly has directed its Committee on Special Duties to invite concerned stakeholders and agencies with a view to finding a lasting solution to the menace of gas explosion in the state.
This was the resolution reached at an emergency plenary on Friday, after the member of the Lagos Assembly representing Alimosho Constituency 1, Hon. Bisi Yusuf brought before the House the explosion that rocked the Baruwa area of Ayobo Ipaja, in which five lives were lost and several properties destroyed.
Hon. Yusuf, while recounting the incident, explained that it was a bad Thursday for the people of Alimosho after the explosion occurred and not only destroyed properties worth millions of naira but also took lives.
The lawmaker noted that the House during the 8th Assembly came up with a resolution condemning siting gas plants within residential areas but that the resolution was not enforced by the necessary agencies.
Members, while lending their voices condemned a situation whereby gas plants are sited with residential areas, just as they urged the state Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development to desist from approving siting of gas plants within residential areas.
Hon. Ganiu Sanni-Okanlawon, the member representing Kosofe Constituency 1, explained that the incessant gas explosion is becoming worrisome. He also advised that the concerned authorities and agencies should carry out proper enforcement of regulations relating to siting of gas plants.
Hon. Kehinde Joseph representing Alimosho Constituency 2, described the incident as an unfortunate one, just as he blamed the regulators for not enforcing the enabling and existing laws guiding gas plants location.
Hon. Joseph added that the issue of explosions is becoming too rampant in Alimosho and as such should be looked into with a view to bringing an end to such occurrence.
Hon. Gbolahan Yishawu representing Eti-Osa Constituency 2, in his submission, noted that there was no way the state government or the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) would grant approval to any operator to site a gas plant within a residential area.
Yishawu, however, urged the state government to ensure that every gas plant within the state that has no approval is shut down, adding that those operators who have approval should also be monitored from time to time to ensure that they comply with the necessary rules and regulations.
Speaker of the Lagos Assembly, while commiserating with the people of Alimosho, especially those who lost loved ones, said the House is the people’s representative can no longer fold its arms and continue to allow the loss of lives.
Obasa pointed out that the responsibility of the government is to protect lives in particular, adding that properties could be replaced when destroyed but lives are irreplaceable.
“So it is our duty to protect the lives of our people and how do we go about that? We need to get accurate information as to how these gas plants are being approved and how they are being supervised.
“We need to allow our committee on special duties to look into this and engage the necessary and concerned authorities and operators, so that we can get true pictures and what exactly is responsible for these explosions,” Obasa said.
The committee on special duties of the House was, however, directed to report back to the House in one week.