The Water Resources Management Authority (Warma) has confirmed that River Sio is not under any pollution from a local sugar factory.
Warma Director Saul Busolo said the river could not be polluted as Busia Sugar Industry (BSI) located in Busibwabo, Matayos Constituency was yet to start crushing cane.
He was at the factory with his team to assess the preparedness of the factory and measures management has put in place to safeguard the river where it is bound to source water from.
Busolo said the ongoing visits to factories in different parts of the country was not targeting any firm but aimed at ensuring that National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) are adhered to for the sake of people living downstream and aquatic life.
“A factory must use the amount of water it started when applying for permit and no waste goes back to the river and before the factory becomes operational it must have measures in place to avoid water pollution,” said Busolo.
Adding that, “The environment laws are clear and any factory that will fail to comply with will be brought down, we are doing this for the sake of people and animals living in the water.”
He warned that any factory built on a wetland risks being demolished. Busia Sugar Industry is yet to start crushing because of a case challenging its licensing which is in the court.
Farmer’s representative Shaban Wandera urged Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Authority (AFFA) to resolve the issue about licensing of the Busia Sugar.
“We have been patient for more than five years and it is high time the factory was given license so that it can start milling,” said Mr Wandera.
The factory was supposed to begin operations in July last year. It however suffered a major setback in May 2017 when Justice Samuel Mukuya of Bungoma High Court cancelled its permit on the grounds that due process was not followed during licensing. The mill has crashing capacity of 3,500 tons per day.