The police have intensified their operations against noise pollution by confiscating the sound equipment of a bar and a church in Remera, Gasabo district. The action also ensures that the law as well as the rights and beliefs of all people are respected.
The equipment, seized at Two Shorts bar and Isoko Imarinyota church, was later returned to the owners after they assured that they would henceforth abide by the regulations.
The police spokesman Theos Badege underlined that public places like churches, bars, restaurants and nightclubs should operate within the confinements of the law by implementing noise control guidelines, such as fitting sound-proof materials.
“Sound should be controlled in a way that it doesn’t affect the beliefs and wellbeing of others in the neighbourhood. Rights, faith and leisure or business can be enjoyed and conducted in a manner that doesn’t violate the rights of other citizens,” he said.
“The law is very clear on sound pollution, and we have to implement it. Some bars and restaurants become nightclubs, especially at night,” Badege noted, advising owners of such businesses to acquire decibel-measuring equipment to help them regulate their sound.
Article 37 of the penal code allows authorities to take action to stop any noise that can be harmful to the health of people and animals, disrupts the neighbourhood or damages property.
Article 108 penalizes anyone who “makes or facilitates in causing noise that may disturb road users and the neighbourhood” with a fine ranging from Rwf 10,000 to Rwf 100,000. Under article 600, “any person found guilty of making noise and night disturbance in a way that causes trouble among people, shall be liable to a term of imprisonment of eight days to two months and a fine of Rwf 50,000 to Rwf 1 million or one of these penalties.