Dakar, 20 January 2023 – The municipality of Cayar has banned the discharge of wastewater into a local lake and its surroundings, in a major win for a local community campaign against a nearby fishmeal factory and its polluting practices. The Taxawu Cayar Collective welcomed the decision as a step forward that will protect the community and the local environment, and used this campaign breakthrough to launch a new phase in its litigation against the factory.
In a previous trial, the Collective had revealed video documentation showing the factory’s truck illegally dumping waste into the nearby Lake Mbawane, and had published an independent analysis carried out by the hydrology and toxicology laboratory of the University of Dakar’s Faculty of Medicine showing illegal levels of chromium and selenium in the lake. The same toxic metals were found at illegal levels in Cayar’s tap water. The Collective did not win the case, but they have now announced they will be filing another complaint soon.
Mor Mbengue, a spokesperson for the Collective, said:
“This decision reinforces what we have been saying all along. The factory is depriving us of our resources and polluting our air, land and water. We will not stop denouncing this injustice because our survival depends on it. Moreover, we will file another complaint to ensure the permanent protection of our rights . This is just one battle won, the final victory is close.”
Dr Aliou Ba, head of Greenpeace Africa’s oceans campaign, said:
“This is a great victory for the communities of Cayar in their struggle against the Barna Senegal fishmeal factory. This industry has been dumping its liquid waste for years into Lake Mbawane, which is directly connected to the water table of the entire locality. It was really time to put a stop to this crime.”
Amagor Robert Niang,
Communications Officer, Greenpeace Africa
International Communications Coordinator, Greenpeace Africa
Greenpeace Africa Press Office