Cameroon Court Clears Dangote Group
(Business in Cameroon) - Lets Green Africa, Hygiene and Environmental Security (HSE) and Bonateki Community dragged Dangote Cement Company to justice for fear of pollution but the judge in the Wouri Court of First Instance throw the case out after the company presented a certificate last March 8 indicating it was in conformity with environmental laws.
“Our lawyer presented a certificate of environmental conformity during the last two hearings. This document is proof that we are in order, and, also our adversaries were proven wrong. Today, work is going on normally”, a worker at the Douala office told the Cameroon Tribune.
But, the “Movement” against the company is not ready give up and are planning to take the case to the Supreme Court, said Achille Kotto, member of the movement. This movement is requesting an immediate halt to work and relocation of the factory.
“The document’s date is March 8, 2013, but work started in November 2011”, indicates Achille Kotto.
As for the Dangote group there is confusion about the date work effectively started. “When we fenced the site, it was to prepare the land. But onlookers thought work had started. As we speak, we have been granted the building permit by the Douala City Council and we now have other necessary documents from the ministry”, explains a cadre at the Douala cement factory.
Dangote earlier faced opposition from residents who filed an injunction arguing the land belonged to the ethnic Sawa people, and reports said construction was halted. Now it is unclear when construction actually began.
Located in Douala, the 1.5 million tons-per-year plant was to be completed in 18 months, an official statement from the group said in September 2012. Cameroon currently has only one cement company, CIMENCAM, with annual output of about 1 million tons.