By Elias Hakizimana.
The new law N°48/2018 OF 13/08/2018 on environment has tightened punitive measures against environment polluters, REMA has said.
It replaces the Organic Law N° 04/2005 of 08/04/2005 determining the modalities of protection, conservation and promotion of environment in Rwanda.
This was said during last week’s meeting with top managers of industries in Prime Economic zone, (PEZ), Special Economic Zone (SEZ) and representatives of government institutions, regarding this law and some alarming cases.
During this meeting, Director General of REMA, Faustin Munyazikwiye shared with managers of industries the details of Nyandungu Ecotourism Park project, which is being developed in the neighborhood of special economic zone and urged them to avoid pollution of that wetland
The article 56 of the new law stipulates that any person who buys, sells, imports, conveys in transit, stores, immerses, buries, burns or uses any other means that may lead to decomposition of toxic waste in a place and which may be harmful to human beings or environment is liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than seven (7) years and not more than ten (10) years.
The law has increased fines which are not less than one hundred million Rwandan francs (FRW 100,000,000) and not more than two hundred million Rwandan francs (FRW 200,000,000).
While being briefed on the new environmental law, industrial owners had an opportunity to share ideas on general provisions, obligations, prohibited acts and penalties.
Identified environmental issues of concern and hot spots were also spelt out, ensuing appropriate corrective measures so as to ensure environmental compliance.
Munyazikwiye said that it is important to highlight and bring to the attention of everybody this law and its regulations, having the effect of avoiding cases of environmental pollution.
“Rwanda put in place the law and guidelines so that we can have a conducive environment. Rwanda has established an organic law in 2005 after we have realized that the law has to be revised and involve climate issues and other specific issues,” he said
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