I try to adhere to the law. No drinking and driving, never steal and refrain from hurting people. Despite my attempts to be a law abiding citizen, I recently became an outlaw. While crossing the border to Rwanda, the immigration service found contraband throughout my suitcase. I was questioned and all of the material was confiscated.
What is this highly illegal substance you ask? The ever present plastic bag. These vessels have been shunned throughout the entire Rwandan state. The government was tired of them piling up in landfills, littering the streets and floating in the water. Now there is a complete ban and each one is collected at the border and recycled.
As I travel back and forth from the DRC and Rwanda, the difference in cleanliness between the two is striking. The imaginary political line that separates the countries seems to protect Rwanda from the litter that inundates the streets of the DRC. Maybe the law has been effective.