KIGALI, (Xinhua) --
Environmental experts on Wednesday expressed concern over the
rate at which the electronic and industrial wastes have been
dumped in open places in most African cities.
Speaking at a panel
session “papers on waste management and environment” during the
2nd edition of Africa Engineering Conference held in
Rwanda’s capital city Kigali, panelists said that electronic and
industrial wastes dumped in open places in various cities and
urban centers in Africa have an adverse impact on human health
and the environment.
electronic and industrial wastes have a multitude of components
with valuable materials, some containing toxic substances, that
are harmful to people and the environment once openly disposed.
Urban authorities in majority African countries are silent on
the issue,” said Wanjau Fiek, Chairman of Engineers Board of
He said Kenya and
Rwanda have taken great strides in protecting the environment by
banning the use of plastic bags, but much is needed to ensure
proper disposal of the waste.
contribute to 8 million tonnes of plastic that leak into the
ocean every year, according to United Nations Environment
At the meeting,
participants called for concerted efforts towards the protection
of the environment through proper disposal of industrial wastes.
According to a UNEP
report in 2015, the growing volumes of e-waste, municipal waste,
industrial waste, food waste, discarded chemicals and
counterfeit pesticides, all contribute to increasing pressure on
The report points
out that up to 90 percent of the world’s electronic waste, worth
nearly 19 billion U.S. dollars is illegally traded or dumped
Director General Rwanda Environment Management Authority, said
that major concerns of industrial and electronic waste
management include air pollution, soil contamination and
diseases transmission which are dangerous to human health and
“We need strong
partnership between government and the private sector to ensure
appropriate infrastructural facilities and procedures for
disposal and recycling of industrial and electronic wastes
without affecting the environment and human life,” she added.
Ruhamya said the use
of electric and electronic goods like mobile phones, television
screens, DVD and CD players, computers, laptops, electric bulbs
and refrigerators are on the rise in urban centers, resulting in
huge electronic wastes, which harm the environment.
Rwanda hosts Africa
engineering forum from Sept. 25 to 29 under the theme “Effective
Waste Management in Africa” with a focus on promoting
professional engineering in Africa to drive infrastructure
conference was organized by the Rwanda’s ministry of
infrastructure in collaboration with the Institute of
Engineering Rwanda (IER) and Federation of Africa Engineering
It has attracted
around 1,000 delegates including government officials,
consultants, and civil society in general together with local,
regional and international engineers, according to the