To enhance environmental health activities across the country, the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) is currently planning to train Nigerian Police Force personnel to foster this aim. The plan was revealed by The Director-General of the agency, Dr. Lawrence Anukam, to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.

The National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) was established by the Federal Government of Nigeria as a parastatal of the Federal Ministry of Environment, Housing and Urban Development. It has responsibility for the protection and development of the environment, biodiversity conservation and sustainable development of Nigeria’s natural resources in general. The vision of the agency is to ensure a cleaner and healthier environment for Nigerians.

According to its director, the work of the agency largely involves the police when it comes to enforcing the law against organizations which do not comply with environmental laws and policies. He said “when the agency is going to seal an organisation which violates environmental laws, the police always follow and there are some inspections we do in which we need to go with police. So we feel that police also should participate in our training to enable them to know more of our activities and the only way to make it effective is to carry them along. For that reason, we decided to develop a training programme, we have provided a training curriculum at the three levels of the police, the junior, the middle and the higher cadre.”

He also mentioned that the new Inspector-General of the police has assured the agency of his commitment toward the partnership which would boost its activities.

A seminar was recently organized by the agency to introduce them to the activities and enlighten the police on the benefits of the training. The seminar was attended by all commandants in police colleges. The training programme involves both state and local levels because they want to ensure nobody is left out.

Anukam said the agency would sensitise the judicial sector to environmental activities in its efforts to promote environmental sanitation. He also said other government agencies would be sensitised to the importance of promoting and keeping the environment clean.

Author: Ope Adedeji