The majority leader of Oyo state House of Assembly, Hon. Sanjo Adedoyin, has called on Oyo state government to place a ban on usage of styrofoams for food service and single-use plastics to prevent its harmful effects on human and the environment.
In a motion titled, “Need To Ban Usage of Styrofoams For Food Service, Storage and Other Related Usage in Oyo state” at the Thursday plenary session, the lawmaker maintained that the usage of styrofoam as a food packaging container and for other domestic usage is hazardous to human health and dangerous to the environment.
According to him, medical researchers have claimed that there is convincing evidence that using styrofoam for food packaging accounts for dangerous health issues, like kidney failure, liver failure, brain damage and other illnesses that people suffer in today’s world.
He noted that the use of styrofoam is common in Africa, and Nigeria, due to its population and availability of market, adding that the presence of styrofoam in our marketplaces, restaurants, streets, and even in drainage systems is visible to the blind.
While stressing that about 3 weeks ago the Lagos State Government has also placed a total ban on use of single use plastic known as styrofoam, including the Government of Abia State who have also ordered the same ban on styrofoam, he noted that the proactive measures will phase out the total use of the deadly substance.
He said: “It is, however, very important as a matter of utmost urgency, to stop the use of styrofoam in Oyo State, as it is hazardous to both the environment and human beings.
“A number of states and cities in America have banned single-use plastic items, like styrofoam, in an effort to cut down on waste and encourage the use of biodegradable or reusable items. As its ban took effect on May 4, 2022, styrofoam is banned in Colorado, Maine, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Washington, D.C. and New Jersey was the most recent to be implemented, Colorado, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington have styrofoam bans that are not yet in effect.
“Concerned that the duty of Government, Mr. Speaker, is to protect the lives of its subjects even if they do not want to be protected. Many people who profit from the sales of this plastic would perceive the Government as wicked but the good that the ban of this plastic would do to the general public would outweigh the profits that few make from its sales. It is therefore important that necessary actions be taken to curtail further hazard and danger to both the environment and human beings.”
Adedoyin, who is representing Ogbomoso South State Constituency, however urged the Executive arm of Oyo Government to through the Ministry of Informatior and Orientation and other information dissemination organs of Government to organize enlightenment programs to sensitize the public on the danger of using styrofoam; and
He equally urged the Ministries of Health and Environment and Natural Resources to put necessary machinery in motion through the State Executive Council for the total ban of styrofoam in Oyo State.