Mauritian Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth declared a state of environmental emergency due to an oil spill on Friday, according to a statement issued on the same day after a cabinet meeting, reports Xinhua.
According to the same source, Jugnauth has signed a declaration under the country’s Environmental Protection Act due to the oil spill caused by a Japanese freighter that ran aground offshore on July 26.
The prime minister visited the scene of the accident on Friday afternoon and chaired a meeting of the crisis committee.
Faced with an angry reaction of the public and the opposition, Jugnauth recalled that from the beginning of the incident, authorities have sent experts to save the ship and the crew. He also stressed that this is not the time for demagoguery.
“Given the weather conditions, the experts said it was essential to stabilize the bulk carrier before starting to pump the oil,” he added.
Jugnauth said the authorities are now focusing on how to contain the oil, adding that there is a risk of a second crack on the ship.