Dangote Sugar Company, owned by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, in Adamawa State, has allegedly released industrial wastes which flooded farmlands in the host community, causing untold hardship to the people.
SaharaReporters was informed that industrial waste which the factory empties into the River Benue through a canal burst and submerged rice farmlands in Hoki village in the Lamurde Local Government Area of the state.
Some of the affected farmers told SaharaReporters that their means of livelihood had been destroyed by the flood.
They also disclosed that the management of the company threatened to unleash personnel of the Nigerian Army to deal with the protesting villagers.
One of the farmers, Danladi James, said, “We are surprised at the reckless manner in which the canal was left opened up to this time of the year.
“In the past 30 years, the canal was closed every May before the rains set in proper; but they deliberately allowed it to open this year. As you can see for yourself the whole of this vast farmland has been flooded. How does the company want us to survive”, he queried?
Another farmer, Victor Moses, said, “There’s a dire humanitarian situation here and Dangote has neglected us. We’re calling on relevant authorities to intervene.”
The community has also petitioned the state House of Assembly, to wade into the matter by calling Dangote Company personnel to order.
The petition signed by a community leader, Sylvanus Ismael and obtained by SaharaReporters, reads in parts, “The incident occurred because the company negligently refused to close the carnal this year as it has been doing over the years.
“This type of flooding is not natural. It is deliberately designed to drain industrial waste. The summary of our report is that Dangote Sugar Company is responsible”, the community said.
When contacted, the Community Liaison Officer of the company, Daniel Andrew, declined to speak on phone.
He, however, said the reporter should visit the management of the company which is 70 kilometers from Yola.
On getting to the factory, Andrew refused to pick calls made to his cellphone.
Instead, one of the soldiers attached to the factory approached and ordered him to leave the premises immediately.
Recall in July this year, soldiers on the request of the company, fired gun shots at seven protesters.