By Lolo Ayaba
The Lagos State Police Command is currently investigating two Chinese for allegedly operating an ‘illegal e-waste factory emitting toxic waste in Opebi area of Ikeja.
The suspects identified as Piehao Lin , 22, and Li Ruoneng, 27, were arrested on Monday at the factory located at 19 Sule Abuka Street, Opebi, Ikeja.
It was learned that the suspects whose visas had since expired assembled e-waste mainly from mobile phones, tablets, which they export to China and Vietnam through air cargo.
According to one of the suspects, Piehao “We buy panels from technicians and scrap sellers. We buy phone panels (Android and Nokia panels). We buy them from phone repairers and scrap sellers. We remove the panel I.C. with machine and then ship it to China and Vietnam,” he said.
We have some Nigerian casual workers in our factory but we give them the rules and urge them to be discrete before they join us.
“We actually came into Nigeria with one month visa to explore the country and study to know the business we can do, but our boss in China urged us to open the factory and we have been enjoying Nigeria and did not want to go back despite the expiration of our visa.”
Explaining further Piehao Lin said I do not have a work permit. I know it is a crime to work without work permit, but the e-waste business is very lucrative. We do a lot to ensure that the smoke from the e-waste does not affect the environment where we operate.” He added.
Confirming the arrest, the spokesperson Lagos State Police Command DSP, Bala Elkana, said the men were arrested late Monday for allegedly operating an illegal e-waste factory.