Nine arrested for selling banned plastic bags

Kajiado County NEMA director Joseph Kopejo(in white shirt)inspects buildings at Kitengela Kyang’ombe estate . File Picture .

By Abdi Hussein

National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) officers have arrested nine people suspected to be suppliers of single-use-plastic bags in Isinya town, Kajiado County.

The arrest comes upon  resurgence of the sale of plastic bags in Kajiado County  by unscrupulous traders.

The ongoing crackdown is targeting retail markets in all satellite towns in Kajiado County currently experiencing an influx of the plastic bags despite the ban.

Kajiado County NEMA Director Joseph Kopenjo said unscrupulous traders are sneaking the plastic bags into the country from neighbouring countries through the porous border.

The traders are said to have seized the opportunity of movement restrictions because of the Covid 19 pandemic to flood the market with the plastic bags.

Kopenjo blamed transporters who are allowed to ferry goods to and from the country for working in cahoots with the illegal trade traders.

 ‘’Nema has intesfied  single-use plastic bags crackdown in all satellite towns in Kajiado because unscrupulous traders have seized the opportunity during the Covid 19 pandemic to import the bags,” said Kopejo.

Mr Kopejo  reiterated the environment watchdog’s commitment to root out the plastic bags menace in the entire county saying they won’t be lenient to offenders.

“We will ensure those arrested are subjected to the rule of law. Even Mama mboga knows its illegal to use plastic bags and we will take the war to the doorstep of suppliers,” he added.

Despite Nema continuous raids to secret plastic bags stores along Namanga highway, the war seems to be far from over.

The use of single use plastic bags has returned in full swing, especially in retail markets and shops.

“Plastic bags are back with a bang. They are no longer sold in secret and we no longer spot customers using alternative bags as before,” said a trader at the Kitengela open market who uses plastic bags to park fruits for her customers.

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