Distiller denies link to toxic effluent, seeks 30 days to comply
Liquor distilling company embroiled in a pollution dispute has requested for 30 days to comply with environmental regulations denying it was involved in the said act. London Distillers Kenya Limited has written to the Export Processing Zone Authority promising to get to the bottom of the matter and sort out the problem.
The distiller made the move days after the EPZA, with the blessings of Mavoko Water and Sewerage Company, disconnected its sewer line from their main sewerage system in Athi River, Machakos county.
In a letter addressed to the EPZA Chief Executive and signed by the company’s General Manager Ashok Satta, the distiller pleads with the EPZA to reconsider its stand on suspending the company’s effluent discharge.
“We refer to your letter dated September 20, 2019 which we received on September 23, 2019. We wish to inform you that we have looked into the issues raised, which we are in the process of addressing,”
the letter reads in part.
London Distillers says it has put up a plant for treatment of effluent before discharging to the EPZA sewer line.
The company says it mostly discharges molasses waste, which is not toxic, and promised to cooperate in environmental conservation.
“We wish to request the authority under its guidance on the issues raised to grant us 30 days to repair our blocked manholes, repair the vandalized pipes and start the factory operations in order to invite your technical team to come over and grant us more advice as they collect samples for further analysis.”
The authority is yet to respond to the distiller’s request.
On September 20, the EPZA suspended the London Distillers’ permit to discharge effluent into their public sewer line.
Acting CEO George Makateto stated in his letter to LDK that they were in possession of test reports from various reputable laboratories indicating that the effluent discharged from the distillery to the authority’s sewer line was hazardous.
“We as an organization do not support any act that will result in pollution and endangering the lives of human beings, the environment and living organisms by allowing you to continue discharging such wastes into the EPZA sewer line. In order to protect our reputation as a responsible authority and to further protect the lives of both human beings and living organisms, we have today suspended your permit to discharge your effluent into EPZA sewer line with immediate effect,”
the letter reads in part.
LDK has moved to court challenging the disconnection.
The company is at war with Mavoko Water and Sewerage Company (Mavwasco), which claims their staff were recently harassed and unlawfully arrested by LDK over the disconnection.
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