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Gambia commemorates ‘No plastic day’

May 19, 2015, 12:05 PM | Article By: Yai Dibba

The National Environment Agency (NEA) recently commemorated The Gambia ‘No plastic day’, a day set aside to assess the impact of plastic bags on the environment and raise awareness on the dangers it causes to the health of the citizenry.

The commemoration was held in form of a march-past from West field to the agency’s head office.

Speaking on the occasion, NEA executive director Madam Ndey Bakurin said: “This year’s commemoration is quite different from the previous years in that we have cause to cerebrate because this year’s commemoration follows the government’s decision to ban plastic bags importation and usage in The Gambia.

“This decision will give positive result in efforts to reduce the challenge of dealing with the plastic waste management in The Gambia.”

The Gambia government has decided to issue a ban on the usage and importation of plastic bags, come 1st July 2015.

Plastic bags serve a short-term purpose but in the long-term they have a lot of negative impacts on the environment and human health as they pollute the water and air.

Madam Bakurin said The Gambia as a country has shown real commitment to the protection of the environment as a key part of sustainable development.

This is why in 2013, the government, through the NEA, set aside 15 May every year as ‘Gambia no plastic day’, a strategic move that seeks to enhance effective plastic waste management throughout the country, she explained.

The deputy permanent secretary, Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Water and Wildlife, Mr Lamin Jawara, said plastic waste management has in recent years become a great concern to both government and the entire population of The Gambia.

He said the disproportionate use of plastic bags for various purposes such as shopping has resulted in an exponential generation of plastic waste that end up in the waste stream, daily basis.