KAMPALA – After spending a night in the coolers of Luzira Prison, businessman Francis Drake Lubega has on Wednesday 25 been sentenced to pay UGX60 million as a court fine for manufacturing substandard small plastic packaging bags.
The Standard, Utilities and Wildlife court at Buganda Road also ordered Lubega to pay an extra Shs2.6 million to UNBS for destruction of 4445Kgs of these bags.
Lubega on September 24 decided to save Court’s time without going through a full trial struck a plea-burgain deal with UNBS officials and pleaded guilty to 2 counts; Manufacture of non-conforming plastic packaging bags and making a false representation of a UNBS Logo on a sub-standard product, in exchange to a non-custodial sentence.
On Wednesday he was brought back to court to receive his sentence before Grade one magistrate Ms Marion Mangeni.
The trial magistrate Ms Mageni has considered that Lubega has been convicted of actions that result into the destruction of the environment but he has not wasted court’s time and resources by pleading guilty to the offenses. She then proceeded to endorse his bargained sentence.
According to the breif facts of the case UNBS officials on August 6 this year conducted a routine inspection at Lubega’s factory; Jesco industries Ltd at Bweyongere and seized 196 cartons of plastic packaging bags that were below the required standards of UNBS.
The said packing bags that bear brands of Inzito and Jesco were also tendered in court as exbhits but the magistrate has ordered that they be returned to UNBS for Lubega who is the Director of Jesco industries Ltd to pay Shs590 to destroy each of the 4445 Kilo-gram.
It should be noted that government banned the manufacture of plastic polythene bags that weigh less than 30 microns due to their adverse effect to the environment.
Having been convicted at his own plea of guilty and sentenced to his own bargained sentence, Lubega has no right to appeal.