Payout for Ivorian waste victims | News | Al Jazeera

Payout for Ivorian waste victims

Most of the compensation paid over dumping of toxic waste to remain with government.

    The poisonous waste was dumped near
    Abidjan which is heavily populated

    It denies responsibility for the dumping.
     
    Families of the 16 people who died after inhaling fumes from the waste will each receive $200,000, while up to 101,000 people who received medical care for vomiting, diarrhoea and breathing difficulties will each receive $408.
     
    A statement from the Ivorian president, read: "The president of the republic reiterates all his compassion to the victims and renews his condolences to the mourning families.
     
    "He assures them he will personally oversee the compensation process."
     
    The waste, chemical slops unloaded from the Probo Koala tanker registered in Panama, was dumped at open-air sites around Abidjan, filling the air around the densely populated city with pungent fumes.
     
    Trafigura has denied any wrongdoing, saying it entrusted the waste, which it described as residues from gasoline mixed with caustic washings, to a registered Ivorian company.
     
    The majority of the settlement, $140.3m, will reimburse the government for the cost of cleaning up the pollution and will pay to upgrade Abidjan's hospitals and build a domestic refuse-processing centre.
     
    The statement said payouts for the families of the deceased and the 75 people who had been hospitalised would begin on June 27 at the offices of the treasury.
     
    Others would be able to claim their dues from the following day onwards.
     
    In court
     
    A British court agreed earlier this year to hear a class action case which law firm Leigh Day & Co brought against Trafigura.
     
    In a statement on Friday, lawyer Martyn Day said he would pursue the private claims for compensation.
     
    Ivory Coast said this week it was seeking an extra initial $82m and a maximum of $461m from Trafigura to cover additional environmental and medical costs stemming from the waste dumping case. Trafigura is disputing this figure.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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