MUKUMBURA — An international non-governmental organisation, Halo Trust, has completed a demining exercise in Mashonaland Central which was funded through a $864 000 Japanese government grant.
by our STAFF REPORTER
The project supported demining activities in Mukumbura and Mount Darwin District, in the north-east of the country along the border with Mozambique which was heavily mined pre 1980.
Speaking at an event to mark the completion of the project on Thursday, Japanese Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Yoshi Tendai Hiraishi said nearly 1 000 mines and over 180 000 square metres were cleared under the project.
“It is noteworthy that more and more land is being opened up to the local community, which guarantees the freedom of movement for everyone in the community,” Ambassador Hiraishi said.
“People now can go across the cleared area while children can walk through to school every day from the border of Mozambique without fear. Moreover, there will be less livestock deaths. We are extremely pleased to hand the land back over to the community and we hope that the cleared land will be utilised for agricultural purposes.”
The main objective of the project was to create a safer environment for local communities, their children and livestock and to return land for agricultural production through the removal of unexploded mines.
Currently, the Halo Trust continues its demining work using another Japanese grant of $853 607 which was disbursed in March 2014. The event was attended by senior government and Zimbabwe Defence Forces officials as well as local community leaders.