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PCPB raises alarm over importation of unregistered pesticides

The Pest Control Products Board (PCPB), has raised concerns over the influx and usage of unregistered and illegal pesticides into the mainstream markets in the country.

Speaking to KNA in Mombasa, PCPB Coast Regional Manager Stanley Nganga said the Board is privy to unauthorized entry and clearance of containers bearing counterfeit pesticides through the Port of Mombasa, that bypass standard procedure and enter the market for consumption.

Nganga  noted that  in the last  few weeks the Board had flagged out several consignments of unauthorized pesticide products, that made their way into the country and falsely declared, during the clearance process at various points of entry.

“We have managed to intercept and gotten tip-offs of huge consignments, at various points of entry, including a 23,700kg container at Boss Freight CFS, that was shipped into the country from Ningbo, China and falsely declared and cleared, contrary to the laid down procedure,” he said.

The Manager added that the incidents have prompted the Board to take stringent measures to enforce compliance and regulate the entry of authorized pesticides into the country.

He said a multi-agency approach that involves law enforcement agencies, will be employed to mitigate this problem.

“The Board has forwarded a few cases to the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) for investigations, including the clearance of unauthorized pesticides that were being held at Boss Freight CFS, containing 23,700kg of falsely declared cargo,” revealed Nganga.

Senior Compliance and Enforcement Officer at PCPB, Karisa Mududu, gave a cautionary appeal to Kenyans, noting that it was paramount that only registered and authorized pesticides sold in licensed agro-vets and retailers, are safe for use.

Mududu said pesticides are hazardous and need extra precaution during handling, since they can cause major health risks in case they are mishandled, or are unfit for use.

He added that the Board is on high alert for pesticide product vendors, who do not comply with the licensing and regularization procedures and risk the closure of their businesses.

“All businesses dealing with pesticide trade in the country, should practice compliance as the Board has intensified efforts to ensure that there is strict adherence to the law,” warned  Mududu.

PCPB is a statutory organization of the Government, mandated to regulate the importation, exportation, manufacturing, distribution, transportation, sale, use and disposal of pest control products in the country.

The Board’s functions are guided by the Pest Control Products (PCP) Act Cap 346, Laws of Kenya.

By Andrew Hinga

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