Factory closed over pollution
Posted Monday, January 7 2013 at 02:00
The Chinese factory is allegedly releasing untreated affluent into the river.
A Chinese factory dealing in toilet paper production in Mukono has closed by the National Environment Management Authority over pollution and contravening pre-operation requirements.
A December 17 letter signed by Nema Executive Director Tom O. Okurut gave M/S Global Paper Industries, located at Mbalala Village, Kasenge Parish in Nama Sub-county, up to December 20 to quit.
The letter copied to the Ministers of Water and Environment, and of Trade, Industry and Co-operatives, and to their respective state ministers, cited offences, including operating without an approved environmental impact assessment, lack of an effluent treatment plant, and abstraction of water from a river without a permit from the water resources management.
“Your company discharges its untreated effluent into River Kasala, which is a major source of domestic water to downstream communities, and this also threatened aquatic ecosystem,” the letter reads in part.
When contacted for comment, a manager at the factory who only identified herself as Maggie, said: “We are in the process of putting in place all requirements for our operation without abusing the country’s environmental laws.”
MP backs termination
She did not, however, indicate when they would resume work.
Area MP, who is the Minister of State for Youth and Children Affairs, Ronald Kibuule, said he backed the closure of the factory because he bore the brunt of the blame from his constituents over pollution of their water.
“I have been approached by former workers who want the closure reversed for loss of work, but we cannot bend the law to suit certain conditions,” Mr Kibuule said.
He added: “When the factory has finalised all formalities, these people will be re-admitted to their jobs.”