Experts agree to conduct feasibility studies ahead of dredging

The Undersecretary in the Ministry of Environment and Forestry Joseph Africano Bartel recently revealed that environmental and social impact assessment will be conducted soon prior to dredging of Bahr El Ghazal River.

Bartel disclosed this during the 5-day public consultation on dredging activities around the Sudd Wetland at Freedom Hall on Sunday in Juba.

“We will do the needful as a ministry, we will have our local experts and international experts to do the screening in all the areas that are affected,” he said. 

“I take the directive of the President seriously, we are going to work to make sure that all the necessary studies will be conducted,” Bartel said.

Bartel said the ministry of environment will not rush feasibilities studies in order to avoid making mistakes.

“A plan will be there and I would to tell our people in the affected areas that these studies are not going to be rushed because we have an emergency, and we have some long-term solutions we would like to do,” he revealed.

He urged the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and international partners to assist flood-victims.

President Salva Kiir during his address to the nation on 9 July, ordered the suspension of all dredging activities along the Naam and Bahr El Ghazal River until environmental impact assessment is conducted. 

The halting of project approved by government last year came after experts and academics at the University of Juba called on the government to first carry out environmental and social impact assessment before dredging the Nile tributaries.

The call was made during public consultation on dredging forum organized by the University of Juba last week.

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