The government has resolved to remove all boreholes that were drilled illegally in wetlands in Harare Metropolitan Province.
In a statement issued this Wednesday, the Office of the Secretary of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Harare Metropolitan Province said all forms of construction in wetlands will be stopped forthwith.
The decision followed a meeting that was held between the Secretary of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Harare Metropolitan Province, Tafadzwa Muguti, the Harare Wetlands Trust and Harare residents representatives on Tuesday the 14 March 2023.
The meeting was convened to discuss the growing invasion of wetlands and illegal water harvesting being facilitated by some council and government officials. Part of the statement reads:
Members of the public are advised that all wetlands in Harare Metropolitan Province have since been gazetted by the Environmental Management Agency through a Cabinet directive. As such no construction or agricultural activities are allowed in wetlands.
Zimbabwe is a signatory to several global conventions on the protection of wetlands and so as a Provincial Government structure, we shall not tolerate any form of wetland invasion.
It has been noted that water extraction permits are being issued for drilling boreholes and harvesting natural spring water in wetlands.
There is also a growing concern over local authorities who are applying for a change of land use from wetlands to commercial or residential stands.
The Environmental Management Agency has been advised not to issue any full or partial authorisations to developers and local authorities on wetlands.
Harare residents have been urged to partner EMA to erect fences to protect wetlands as well as report all illegal activities directly to Muguti’s offices on 0242 762 988.
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