The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) on Tuesday arrested 24 people for contravening effluent discharge of licensing and also banned use of polythene papers in Homa Bay County.
The authority conducted raids in Homa Bay town, junction Kodoyo and Rodi Kopany trading centre where the suspects were arrested.
Speaking to KNA after the raid, the Homa Bay County Director of Environment, Josiah Nyandoro said that out of 24 culprits, 2 were found contravening environmental management and coordination act by commencing a project without environmental impact assessment report.
Nyandoro said that the two had applied for the license but they had not gotten it and yet they had commenced the project before the conclusion of the all process without an environmental impact assessment report.
He further said that most of the people arrested were found with commodities such as mandazi, sugar, chips, vegetables, charcoal among others packed in the polythene bags contrary to the act.
The County Director further said that the culprits will be arraigned before the court and charged with contravening a measure contrary to section 140 (b) of the environmental management act.
“Polythene papers were banned in 2017 and there are other alternatives of the bags such as cloth bags which are nowadays used in the markets, those who are still using the polythene papers should simply discard them,”Nyandoro said.
The officer also reiterated that they are still investigating the source of plastic paper bags, adding that they will not relent until the culprits are brought to book, adding that similar crackdown will be conducted in Mbita, Oyugis, Kendu bay and other big towns.
“I want to send a stern warning to scrupulous businessmen behind the supply of the polythene bags to small scale traders in the region that the law will soon catch up with them,” Nyandoro disclosed.
The crackdown team was reinforced by NEMA officials and county police officers.
At the same time, Nyandoro said that the suspects were released on a police cash bail and they will appear before Homa Bay law courts in the course of the day.
By Dan Oduor//Davis Langat