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How industrialised countries tried to make Africa the biggest dumping destination

Published: Friday 15 June 2001

some European countries and the us had plans to dump 29 million tonnes of toxic wastes in 11 African countries. But their plans were stalled in the wake of widespread protests from African communities. These are the findings of a new report, which was recently released by Oladele Osibajo, Nigeria's national coordinator of the secretariat of the Basel convention on transboundary movement of hazardous waste. The us , the uk , Italy, France and Switzerland wanted to dispose off their hazardous waste in Nigeria, South Africa, Angola, Benin, Congo and Guinea. Other African countries that were targeted include Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, Zimbabwe and Sierra Leone. The materials to be dumped comprised radioactive and chemical wastes, pesticides sludge and other hazardous substances.

The report alleges that some of the African countries were cooperating with the us and European countries as they had been lured with financial assistance. For example, a European country had planned to dump about five million tonnes of industrial wastes in Angola by paying a sum of us $2,000,000. The deal was cancelled when the Angolan government detected loopholes in the agreement, the report claims. Congo is named as the first country in Africa to officially allow dumping of toxic wastes.

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