Banned plastic carrier bags abundant in Arusha, Kilimanjaro - NEMC

23Jan 2020
James Lanka
The Guardian
Banned plastic carrier bags abundant in Arusha, Kilimanjaro - NEMC

THE National Environment Management Council (NEMC) has embarked on a new campaign to remove banned plastic carrier bags from the market in Arusha and Kilimanjaro regions where the items are being used illegally.

Speaking to reporters here yesterday during an impromptu inspection of factories, shops and markets in Moshi Municipality, Environmental Officer from NEMC Northern Zone Justin Kasoka said that although the government banned the production, distribution and use of plastic carrier bags since June last year, the items are available in Arusha and Kilimanjaro regions, explaining that some are being produced illegally in the regions while others are smuggled in from neighbouring country Kenya through illegal routes.

"During our impromptu inspection we learnt that although the majority are aware of the government ban, there are still some people who produces, distribute and use the banned items," he said.

Kasoka further explained that they made an impromptu inspection at some areas in Moshi Municipality including the Moshi Central Market, NARA Plastics Limited, and Mufaddal Plastics Industries Limited where they found some banned plastics bags in some areas that are claimed either to be produced illegally or imported illegally from Kenya through panya routes.

"Through our special intelligence taskforce, we learnt that, most of the banned illegal plastic bags are produced illegally by some 'awkward traders' in the country while some of them are imported illegally from Kenya through illegal routes in Tarakea, Holili, and Kitobo in Kilimanjaro region, and Namanga in Arusha region..." Kasoka explained.

Speaking during the impromptu inspection at his shop, the Managing Director of NARA Plastics in Moshi Municipality, Joseph Massawe explained, the plastics bags that NEMC founded at his business centre were there purposely for packaging goods for his shop and his customers.

"At my shop, NEMC found plastic bags that I sell and use purposely for packaging goods and not for carrying goods as I know the government has banned them since June last year, but they (NEMC Officials) collected all of them from my shop," Massawe claimed during an impromptu inspection.

For his part, the General Manager for Mufaddal Plastics Industrues Limited, Bharat Vaja explained that, since the ban of plastic bags in June 2019, his company is not producing such bags, instead they are producing environmental friendly bags.

"We are now producing environmental friendly bags, but sometimes we are producing special plastic bags meant for packaging goods for our products and for our customers..." he explained.

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