The Enviromental Protection Agency (EPA) has ordered Shinefeel Ghana Company Limited, a Chinese factory at Asutsuare, near Osudoku in the Shai-Osudoku District of the Greater Accra Region, to close down its plastic products factory with immediate effect.
The company produces toilet rolls, plastic plates, egg crates, among other products.
The EPA’s order was issued because smoke from the factory was adversely affecting the health of staff and students of the Osudoku Senior High Technical School (OSUTECH) located nearby, leading to the closure of the school.
According to the EPA, the plastic factory was too close to the school and that it would continue to pose a threat to the health of the school population, if it was allowed to continue to operate.
At a meeting with the management of the company, the Deputy Executive Director of the EPA, Mr Ebenezer Appah-Sampong, noted that the factory was operating beyond the mandate granted it.
He explained that per the records with the EPA, the factory was not permitted to recycle plastic and produce plastic materials.
He added that a memorandum of understanding among the district assembly, the school and the management of the factory to relocate the school should be fast-tracked and finalised to solve the problem.
Management to comply
The General Manager of the company, Mr John Awuku Dziwornu, said the management would comply with the order for peace to prevail.
He said although the factory had created jobs in the area, if the same community was suffering as a result of smoke from the factory, then management must be sensitive to the plight of the people.
Briefing the Daily Graphic on the issue, the Assistant Headmaster of OSUTECH in charge of Administration, Mr Moses Petiafo, said the unbearable fumes from the factory, which resulted in the collapse of 13 girls who were rushed to the Akuse Government Hospital, led to agitation by the students last week.
He said the agitation became uncontrollable, leading to the closure of the school, and appealed to the stakeholders to expedite action on the issue for the school to reopen for academic work to continue.