‘Environmental polluters should pay higher fines’

05May 2021
By Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
‘Environmental polluters should pay higher fines’

​​​​​​​MINISTER of State in the Vice President’s Office (Union and Environment) Seleman Jafo yesterday ordered the National Environment and Management Council (NEMC) to continue fining manufacturers who violate environmental management laws.

Seleman Jafo.

Speaking during a special tour in the Coast Region where he visited two factories, the minister ordered NEMC to fine Fortune Cement Company in Mkuranga District, Pwani Region for environmental pollution.

In his remarks, Jafo was not satisfied with the state of environmental protection initiatives the factory had kept in place regardless of several warnings that have been issued to the cement manufacturer and is yet to observe regulations by the council.

"Residents surrounding this area have shouted a lot about this factory and today we have come and found that the whole management is nowhere to be found. We have informed the management about our visit but so far no nobody is here which means they have fled away,” said Jafo.

"I direct NEMC to take legal action in accordance with the law. If someone pollutes the environment and you have already given them instructions don’t hesitate to fine them" said Jafo.

The factory which had previously been given instructions on how to take care of the environment, that includes control of cement dust produced at the factory, has defied the instructions, which has caused local residents to cry foul of the pollution.

On the other hand, Jafo commended Lodhia Steel Industries manufacturer of construction items at Kisemvule village in the district for being responsible in environment management. 

"Of all the factories I visited since I assumed office you guys are doing the best. This is the best factory that has done well in environmental protection and, if possible, other industrialists should come and learn," he added..

The factory has a modern waste recycling system where the waste is processed and re-used instead of being disposed of and also loaded with a good cooling system for mechanics and thus producing a favourable atmosphere for its employees.

The factory’s Director Sailesh Pandit, asked the minister to allow the importation of scrap metal, claiming that the metals collected by scrap metal traders are not enough to meet their needs.

"The scrap metal we find here in the country is canned. I ask you to reconsider permits for importing scrap metal in order to meet the factory demand," said Pandit.

According to him, the factory with about 700 workers produces 200 tons of steel per day when it has the capacity to produce up to 300 tons of steel if it gets enough material to make steel.

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