KOT slam NEMA after hawkers arrested with banned plastic bags face Ksh.2M fine
Kenyans have gone up in arms after 3 traders were arrested in Nairobi hawking their wares using the banned plastic bags.
The hawkers were set to be arraigned in court on Tuesday after an operation that the National Environment Management Authority of Kenya (NEMA) said recovered 500 bags.
The authority further noted the threesome now faces a fine of KSh.2 to KSh.4M or a jail term of between 1 and 4 years.
The arrests attracted the ire of Kenyans with a majority accusing the authority of double standards:
See some reactions below:
This is low even for NEMA. NEMA can't do basic stuff like draft local trash separation and recycling policies for the public or even come up with plastic recycling plants but they can harass poor people lol. I struggle to see the use of NEMA
— Samantha (@Rchesoni) February 18, 2020
I want to presume that this people you have paraded here are the ones who manufactures those bags.
— Calvo (@caldeony) February 18, 2020
After a whole exposure of lakes and rivers having waste being drained in them in two months you only deem fit to arrest common low income traders trying to make a living while those killing us with their effluent continue scott free after filling your corrupt pkts hamna aibu!!!
— lukhale joab makinda (@jolumayobi) February 18, 2020
I have never seen NEMA go for those producing theses polythene bags nor the wholesalers supplying them. Very unfair, and the case will move with godspeed, God be with the trio.
— Mkenya krykogudsovaggen (@PTaabu) February 18, 2020
Interrogate them where they buy banned packaging paper from. If not able @DCI_Kenya are based along Kiambu road towards Karura Forest Gate as Prez Uhuru says#LitterFreeKenya #LitterFreeMovement #LitterFreeHighways #BeatplasticPollution #LitterFreeMovement
— Litter-Free Kenya (@LitterFreeKenya) February 18, 2020
Did you know that sausages from farmers choice, pampers, know that Ketepa Tea bags box, beans and other cereals in supermarkets available for middle class are all wrapped in one time use polythene bags? This is a “social class war”
— Andrew (@AnotherKenya) February 18, 2020
Welcome to kenya republic of china. Shamba la wanyama. Some animals are more equal than others. I thought raila was petty when he complained of not being allocated a toilet. Matiangi has claimed the award.
— Barnabas (@BKiplimo) February 18, 2020
Though I do not sympathize with anyone using the banned bags, this is too low for you guys. Extremely low, bearing in mind that the unscrupulous dealers responsible for production and supplying the polythene bags in bulk are walking scot-free.
— Giitwa Gichuki (@Giitwa_Gichuki) February 18, 2020
This is a joke in 21st Century. How many rivers are being polluted daily? How are our streets and many residentials? Is there atmospheric air balance? Do Kenyans breath oxygen or poisons? Stop majoring on the minor
— ELISHA OKODE (@elisha_okode) February 18, 2020
Yet developers and industries have carte blanche to spew any effluent into our waterways and ruin the air quality. Why can’t y’all lobby for tax-free importation of compostable plastics and for tax holidays and other incentives for compostable plastic companies to set up here?
— Hic sunt dracones (@EMungau) February 18, 2020
Cut the nonsense. Why bother the poor? Plastic bags have been here all along except supermarkets. Why not turn them to witnesses to arrest the peddlers! You need to get this right. Follow the chain and arrest the manufacturer or the importer.
— Freddy Kituar (@FredKituar) February 18, 2020
Kenya banned the use, manufacture and sale of environmentally harmful plastics, polythene bags and packaging materials through a Gazette Notice dated March 14, 2017
The plastic paper bags were categorised as the leading cause of poor drainage and environmental degradation.
And on Wednesday, June 5, 2019 President Uhuru Kenyatta announced a ban on the use of single-use plastics in protected areas in the country effective June 5, 2020.
President Kenyatta who was speaking when he addressed the plenary session of the ongoing Women Deliver 2019 Conference in Canada, said that the ban will cover all national parks, forests, beaches and conservation areas.