Disposal of medical waste: a legal perspective in Zimbabwe

Stuart T. Nyakatswau, Donewell Bangure, Gashema Pierre, Howard Nyika


The constitution of Zimbabwe provides that everyone has the right to an environment that is not harmful to their health and well-being. However, the illegal dumping and inappropriate disposal of hazardous waste poses a danger to the health of scavengers who are directly exposed to it and to the environment when pollutants migrate into water sources, spread into air and ultimately causing widespread of infection and toxicity.2 The safe disposal of hazardous waste is governed by legislation and regulations which in turn gives effect to the constitution.


Zimbabwe, Healthcare, Waste, Act

Full Text:



Zimbabwean Government. Constitution of Zimbabwe, No. 20 of 2013. Harare: Government Printer, 2013. Available at: https://www.parlzim. Accessed 04 August 2021.

Zhakata I. Proper Medical Waste Disposal Urged. Herald Newspaper. Available at: https://www.herald. Accessed 04 August 2021.

Zimbabwean Government. Statutory Instrument. 268 of 2018. Harare: Government Printer, 2018. Available at agency/downloads/file/Statutory%20Instruments/S.%20I.%20268%20of%202018%20Environmental%20Management%20Hazardous%20Sub.pdf. Accessed 04 August 2021.

Zimbabwean Government. Public Health Act No. 11 of 2018. Harare: Government Printer, 2018. Available at: Accessed 04 August 2021.

Environmental Management Agency. Polluter Pays as an Environmental Management Principle, 2021. Available at: agency/downloads/file/Polluter%20Pays%20as%20an%20Environmental%20Management%20Principle.pdf Accessed 04 August 2021.

Chartier, Y. Safe Management of Wastes from Health-Care Activities. 2nd ed. Geneva: WHO; 2014.

Medicines Control Authorit of Zimbabwe (MCAZ), Pharmacy Guidelines for Investigational Medical Products, 2020. Available at: zw/index.php/downloads/category/15-guidelines? download=319:pharmacy-guidelines-for-investigat-ional-medical-products. Accessed 04 August 2021.

Zimbabwean Government. Occupational Health and Safety, Labour Act, Chapter 28.01 and NSSA (Accident Prevention) (Workers Compensation Scheme) Notice No. 68 of 1990. Harare: Government Printer, 1990. Available at: zimbabwe/decent-work-check/health-and-safety-laws/health-and-safety-regulation. Accessed 04 August 2021.

Zimbabwean Government. Factories and Works Act (Chap 14:08) of 1996. Government Printer. Available at: Accessed 17 August 2021.