World & Community

Outcry over wetlands destruction in Harare

By Agencies

COMMUNITY-based organisations (CBOs) have raised concern over the depletion of wetlands, blaming sand poachers for the vice, among other environmental degradation activities, posing a threat to the ecosystem.

Cleveland Dam has become the latest victim of sand poaching activities which have been going on unabated.
The dam is a recognised wetland under the Ramsar Convention, which Zimbabwe signed in 2011.

In a petition, the CBOs reiterated the importance of wetlands for sustainable development.

“It is discouraging to note that in Harare, wetlands continue to be depleted due to illegal construction activities, sand mining, pollution as well as agricultural activities, among other factors,” the petition read.

“This is despite the fact that these wetlands serve as water sources for Harare.”
“As the City of Harare is in the process of updating its master plan, we recommend that an updated master plan for Harare must appreciate the fact the future sustainability of the capital is dependent on wetland preservation and environmental sustainability.

“Proper land use planning in Harare should incorporate the need to protect wetlands in line with the vision of sustainable development of the capital.”

The CBOs said a number of wetlands in Harare needed restoration after having been damaged.

The CBOs which signed the petition include Cleveland Action Alliance, Manyame Conservation Trust, Network for Environmental and Climate Justice and Residents Against Land Degradation.


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