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Riverside residents panic over explosions

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Residents of West Point Township, Vai Town and Slipway communities are calling for the intervention of the Ministry of Justice in arresting individuals exploding dynamite to kill fish near the Gabriel Tucker Bridge and the Waterside Bridge over the Mesurado River in central Monrovia.

Speaking to this paper, the residents note that the use of chemical explosives into the river by unscrupulous fishermen is not only creating panic among them, but has a propensity to cause serious damage of the two bridges.

Mrs. Siatta Harmon, Messrs. Jefferson Lawson, and Moses P. C. Harris warn that if the government did not take concrete action to deter the activity, most of the water species, including fishes would be extinct.

They note that during the process of blasting, the bridges mentioned would shake as the dynamite explodes in the water, sending huge sound across the communities named.

According to them, what is so astonishing about the situation is the fact that there are no police depots near those sites where the detonation occurs, and nothing is being done by the nation security apparatus to apprehend those involved, as it poses dangers to not only marine life, but human beings and infrastructure.

The residents recall that previous government banned unauthorized use of explosives in Liberia’s territorial waters by fishermen to avoid contamination and to safeguard bridges from being damaged.

The concerned residents also seek government’s attention to illegal trucking of sand from the river by unidentified individuals from Slipway, Vai Town and West Point, respectively for commercial purposes despite a ban by the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA.
They explain that those involved in the practice usually used small canoes to transport sand into the communities without any arrest. They recall that at least two persons had died from the use of dynamite in the river to kill fish.By Emmanuel Mondaye

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