According to Sam Cheptoris who is the Minister of Water and Environment, the term for the previous board expired mid last year.
L-R NEMA Board Director James Lutalo, Priscilla Nyadoi, Board chairman NEMA Sandy Stevens Tickodri-Togboa, Minister of Water and Environment Sam Cheptoris, Beatrice Byarugaba, Julian Kyomuhangi and Paul Mafabi pose for a photo after inauguration.20 December 2017.Photo by Richard Sanya
The long awaited board of trustees at the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) has been appointed. The new board will support fast tracking of social and environmental assessments ahead of oil extraction expected to start by 2020.
According to Sam Cheptoris who is the Minister of Water and Environment, the term for the previous board expired mid last year. He challenged the new board trustees to guide senior management at the top government watchdog on environment to achieve sustainable development as Uganda moves to extract oil by 2020.
“As per the National Environment Act, Cap.153, the NEMA board is comprised of representatives of ministries, academia, private sector and CSOs,” said Cheptoris.
“Due to the developments in the environment sector, especially as we expect oil by 2020, and the need to reduce on review time for environment and social impact assessment, Government grated additional 35 staff to NEMA structure is now 111 persons strong,” he said.
He was speaking yesterday at NEMA House in Kampala during the inauguration of the board which included swearing in of the board members among others. Cheptoris was flanked by the State Minister for Environment, Dr. Goretti Kitutu. Dr. Tom Okurut, NEMA’s executive director and senior management at NEMA also attended the meeting.
Kitutu said NEMA has the responsibility of monitoring all environmental institutions in the country and that failure in the environment sector will be blamed on NEMA. “We need troops on the ground and also work with the districts to protect the environment,” she said, adding that there were reports coming up about destruction of wetlands and forests.
Tricodri-Tagboa new chairperson
The 11-member board of trustees is headed by Professor Sandy Stephens Tricodri-Tagboa. He will be deputized by Dr. Pricilla Nyandoi, the executive secretary of Uganda Wildlife Society who is also a representative of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).
Other members of the board are Dr. Pascal Musoli from Kawanda Agricultural Institute representing academic and research institutions, Esther Tabu Cherop, executive director, Jamil Ya Kupatanisha representing Local Non-Governmental Organisations, Julian Komuhangi, assistant Commissioner Health Services representing the Ministry of Health.
The board also includes, Professor Elly Sabiiti from Makerere University representing academic institutions, James Lutalo, director wildlife conservation representing the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife, William Ndoleriire, assistant Commissioner, social services representing Ministry of Finance, Gideon Bagadawa, executive director, private sector foundation representing private sector. The Commissioner of crop production in the Ministry of Agriculture, Beatrice Byarugaba and Paul Mafabi, Director of Environmental Affairs are also members of the board.
In a brief speech, Tricodri-Tagboa said they were going to support NEMA in its drive to get rid of plastic bags. “Based on the skills and competences of the board members, we shall ensure that the ban on plastics is achieved , wetlands are preserved and the environment is protected according to ensure sustainable development,” he said, adding that they will undertake field visits and also get guidance from the Minister as well as the Policy Committee on environment.