Tema recorded 154 noise pollution complaints last year

MAHAMA AYARIGA MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT,SCIENCE ,TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION (10)ABOUT 154 complaints on noise pollution in the Tema metropolis and its environs were recorded by the Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA), last year.

Of the number, 34 involved loud noise from sound systems operated by churches and drinking bars in their areas of operations.

The TMA Environmental Health Officer, Mr. Edward Shardey, who disclosed these in an interview yesterday, said noise pollution by churches and drinking bars was becoming an issue in the Tema metropolis.

He explained that their investigations showed that the churches and drinking bars, in other to attract attention, used sound systems that made loud noises far beyond the stipulated noise levels under section 56 (c) of the Public Health Act 2012, ACT 851.

Noise pollution is the disturbing or excessive noise that may harm the activity or balance of human or animal life.

The law states that “A person who in a public place or space after being warned to desist, makes a loud or an unseemly noise to the annoyance or disturbance of any other person, as determined by the Environmental Protection Agency, commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not more than GH¢3,000, or to a term of imprisonment of not more than three years or to both”.

He said because the noise pollution law was enacted only about three years ago, his outfit decided first to invite the churches and drinking bar operators to a meeting to educate them on the law, after which they made a commitment to reduce the noise levels.

“If they contravene the undertaking they have agreed on to reduce noise levels, we will haul them to court,” he said.

Mr. Shardey, therefore, warned churches and drinking bar operators to ensure that they do not play loud music to disturb their neighbours as it was against the law.

He said other complaints received by his outfit bordered on the discharge of effluent into drains, growth of weeds on undeveloped plots and smoke nuisance.

Mr. Shardey said last year, 230 out of 5,442 people who applied for licences to sell food in the metropolis were found to have contracted typhoid after examination.

He said they were, therefore, treated and re-examined before being given licences to operate.

Mr. Shardey said the rationale for the examination was to prevent food vendors or handlers from cross infecting buyers with tuberculosis, typhoid and worm infestations, among others.

From Godfred Blay Gibbah,Tema

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