Parliament’s Natural Resources committee has resolved to summon the ministers for agriculture, wildlife and tourism on the proposed environmental bill 2017 before it is presented on the floor of parliament next month.
The objective of the bill is to repeal the national Environment Act of 1998 and replace it with tougher laws which will counter the environmental degradation.
The committee chaired by Alex Byarugaba has been meeting various stakeholders for the last month and they believe that the environmental bill 2017 is timely given the high rate of environmental degradation.
Recently, the state minister for environment Mary Goretti Kitutu, while inspecting Mabira forest called for intervention of Uganda Peoples Defence Forces to take charge of the forest.
While interacting with members from the civil society, the committee agreed that a specialized police unit should be created to deal with those who degrade the environment.
According to the current law, NEMA has an enforcement unit which reports directly to the authority.
Actors from various civil society groups urged the committee to put stringent laws which will handle cases of people who pollute the environment.