By Aji Fatou Faal
Lamin Dibba, Minister of Agriculture has informed the National Assembly Members that he has sent a request to the National Environment Agency (NEA) to assess and advise on the safe disposal of expired fertilizer stored for years posing health risks in Soma.
He made this disclosure when responding to a question posed by Fakebba Colley, NAM for Kiang West who wanted to know how soon those responsible would remove the said fertilizers from the stores in Soma.
“I only learned about the stock of expired fertilizer in Mansa Konko Area Council through this very correspondence I am responding to,” he told members.
The member for Serekunda Halifa Sallah asked the minister to confirm that what is in the store is not fertilizer but a toxic waste. In response the minister said the information he got is about fertilizer not toxic waste.
Asked why the fertilizer had been stored to rot for years while farmers are crying for it, the minister replied that he is not in a position to know the reason for that but he has begun an investigation into the matter to find out who stored the fertilizer and why.
The minister promised to update the NAMs on the issues when available.
The NAMs however pressured the minister to tell them when the said toxic waste will be evacuated and where to dispose it.