Namibia lacks e-waste management policy: Kamutuezu

Deputy Director of Policy and Regulations at Ministry of Information and Technology (MICT), Elizabeth Kamutuezu said Namibia does not have a regulatory and policy framework in place to safeguard the health, environmental social consequences of electronic waste (e-waste).

Speaking here on Thursday at the stakeholders meeting on the national e-waste management policy, Kamutuezu said one of the challenges in dealing with e-waste is that the current laws and policy of general waste management does not have a clear cut definition of on how to deal with e-waste.

There is a need for the formulations of e-waste specific policy and regulatory framework and intensify the public awareness and consumer education on e-wastes; consumers should be aware of the three Rs (recycle, reduce and reuse), she said.

Kamutuezu said the increase in e-waste is caused by the increase in the use of electronics and which are having a shorter lifespan.

She added the government is also contributing to the e-waste in the community as they auction the irreparable or redundant electronic equipment to the public.

She added that other challenges of e-waste management are such as lack of data on e-waste management in the country, lack of coordinated approach from the relevant stakeholders on e-waste management and lack of infrastructure for appropriate waste management.

Without sufficient data on e-waste, we cannot make an informed decision on e-waste management, she said.

She added that there is also no separation of waste at households, therefore making it difficult for municipalities to deal with e-waste.

Speaking at the same event, Esther Endjala from the City of Windhoek (CoW), solid waste management is unit; said CoW is only having two companies that are dealing with e-waste.

She added that other waste management companies also take in e-waste but however they could not establish much e-waste thee city is dealing with as these companies do not have data records of e-wastes as that other waste category.

She said CoW has the policy for solid waste management which aims to provide framework for waste management, irrespective of their nature, toxicity and quantity,

She added the policy also aims to reduce the risk impact of waste to human and environment and to minimise waste generated per capita.

We are challenged with the residents who don't know where to take their e-waste and this leads to illegal dumping and there is no national policy and laws to support our by-laws and no data on e-waste, she said.

She said Cow is having few garbage bins at strategic places for e-wastes.

Source: Namibia Press Agency