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Kenya at last bans the plastic bag

By James Wakibia | May 9th 2017

It was great news that the government of Kenya through the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources in a gazette notice number 2356 banned the use, manufacture, and importation of all plastics bags.This is a clear indication that indeed our calls demanding a ban on plastic bags was not in vain.

Kenya has for a long time suffered greatly from the negative effects of plastic bags; they have caused clogging of drains and rivers which have contributed to floods in different parts of the country, they have been blamed for killing of marine and domestic animals and also being breeding grounds for malaria causing mosquito among many other ills.

 Plastic litter makes our environment look terrible and since we are not ready to change our mindset against wanton littering and bad solid waste management we have to swallow the bitter pill.

A World Economic Forum recent report said that by the year 2050 if we do not change our ways there will be more plastic bags in the ocean than fish.

This is quite alarming and the step and direction Kenya has taken will greatly help in mitigating this global problem. It’s, therefore, important that all nations impose bans on single-use plastic bags and even to the larger extension disposable cups and straws, and believe me, we will not die once that happens.

There are many alternative environmentally friendly bags that we can use for our daily use including cloth bags, paper bags, and sisal bags, it would, therefore, be fallacious for anybody to allege that Kenyans will suffer for lack of alternative packaging bags- Rwanda a darling of everybody did it what will make it difficult for us.


The environment is our home we must work together to conserve it always, to be mindful of what we put in it for our own and future generation’s sake. Today our planet is going through very difficult times because of man’s greed to benefit and not take care of it.

We will need to work together to defeat profit driven selfish businessmen who will work day and night to scuttle this noble idea whose time has come.

Together we shall ensure the ban is implemented to the letter. I hope all single-use plastic packaging whether be they shopping bags or those that wrap bread and sugar will face the same axe. We cannot afford to exclude others that are equally polluting.

Manufacturers of food and non-food products should begin readying for the big shift before time catches up with them, ultimately it is for everybody’s gain.

It’s, therefore, my joy that plastic bags have been banned in Kenya.

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