Fighting these non-biodegradable products is, therefore, part of Rwanda National Police’s (RNP) day-to-day operations in partnership with local authorities and the general public.
In an operation conducted on Sunday, August 28, Police in Nyagatare District arrested one Angelique Mukeshimana, 44, in Gikukuru Village, Kabuga Cell of Karama Sector in possession of 110 cartons (22, 000 pieces) of polythene bags.
Mukeshimana was apprehended as she sneaked the plastic bags into Rwanda from Uganda, according to Superintendent of Police (SP) Hamdun Twizeyimana, the Police spokesperson for the Eastern Region.
“Police was tipped-off by a resident about Mukeshimana, who was trafficking plastic bags from Uganda through a porous border in Mukoki.
An operation was conducted and the suspect was apprehended in Kabuga cell with 110 cartons of plastic bags,” said SP Twizeyimana.
Mukeshimana was at the time heading to Ngarama to supply traders there.
SP Twizeyimana warned traders against selling and using the banned polythene bags, which pose ill-effects on the environment.
Use of non-biodegradable polythene bags is by prohibited in Rwanda under law N° 17/2019 of 10/08/2019 relating to the prohibition of manufacturing, importation, use, and sale of plastic carry bags and single-use plastic items.
Article 3 prohibits manufacturing, use, importation or sale of plastic carry bags and single-use plastic items.
In article 10, any person, who imports plastic carry bags and single-use plastic items is liable to the dispossession of those plastic carry bags and such items, and to an administrative fine equivalent to ten times the value of those plastic carry bags and single-use plastic items.
In article 11, a wholesaler of plastic carry bags and single use plastic items is liable to an administrative fine of Rwf700, 000 and dispossession of those plastic carry bags and such items.
In article 12, a retailer of plastic carry bags and single-use plastic items is liable to an administrative fine of Rwf300, 000 and dispossession of those plastic carry bags and such items.