High court to deliver ruling in plastic bag ban case

The High Court is Friday expected to rule on whether a ban on plastic bags will take effect at the end of the month.

Manufacturers are seeking temporary suspension of the new regulations, pending a case in which they’re challenging the directive by Environment cabinet secretary Judy Wakhungu.

They argue that there was no public participation that informed the ban, and that it has caught producers unawares, exposing them to huge economic losses.

Meanwhile, The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) has assured Kenyans that the ban on plastic bags will not be used to harass Kenyans.

NEMA Director General Geoffrey Wahungu urged Kenyans to cooperate for the sake of the environment.

Wahungu said they are not looking to arbitrarily arrest Kenyans who defy the ban.

Some of the controversial parts of the ban are the hefty fine and jail term prescribed should one be found on the wrong side of the law.

The Director General however says that two to four million shillings fine, one to two years jail term for offenders or both were passed after exhaustive consultations.

Elsewhere, Miraa traders in Mwingi have expressed concern over the ban on plastic bags saying it would greatly affect their business.

According to the traders, they rely on plastic bags for packaging their products and thus the ban is not viable.

Polythene bags vendors in the town are also concerned that the ban might kick them out of business once it takes effect.

They refuted claims that plastic bags are a nuisance and urged the county government to erect dustbins at appropriate places for polythene disposal.

They are also urging the government to reconsider the ban and instead look for an alternative of garbage disposal means.

  

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