Defiant business persons using banned plastic bags

THE government has issued a strong warning over defiant people and business persons using banned packaging plastic bags, saying it will not hesitate to take stern measures against them.

The Minister of State, Office of the Vice President’s Office (Union and Environment), Dr Selemani Jafo, has equally directed regional Secretariat’s, cities, municipalities and district councils in all parts of the country to continue controlling the use of packaging materials that are not allowed by the legislation, adding that implementation of the ban on plastic bags was a responsibility of all stakeholders.

Dr Jafo issued the directive yesterday when addressing a news conference in Dodoma. He was providing a report on implementation of the order to ban the use of plastic bags, where he tasked the National Environment Management Council (NEMC) in collaboration with the Regional Secretariats through all regional offices of NEMC to conduct campaigns to remove banned plastic bags.

Also, Dr Jafo emphasised and warned the public that it was a legal offense to change the use of such packaging into bags for carrying products and according to the law, appropriate punishments would be instituted to those who would violate the law, including manufacturers, importers, distributors and users of plastic packaging products which would be imported into the country and used as product carriers.

“On August 26, 2022, as the minister responsible for the environment, I issued a statement to the public emphasising on the ban against the use of packaging plastic bags to be used as carriers, especially for market products,” he stated.

However, the minister insisted: “The current situation shows a serious violation of the Regulations on the ban of plastic bags by some producers and distributors who have replaced soft plastic bags with alternative illegal materials that are being used as product carriers.”

Dr Jafo reminded the public that It should be noted that on June 1, 2019, the government banned production, importation, exportation, distribution and use of plastic bags and that the success of the ban had enabled the improvement of environmental protection, especially in urban areas.

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