HomeLocal NewsByo to clamp down on stream bank farming

Byo to clamp down on stream bank farming

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THE Bulawayo City Council has threatened to destroy crops planted along streams, as the local authority enforces by-laws prohibiting stream bank cultivation.

BY TALENT GUMBO

Bulawayo City Council
Bulawayo City Council

Ward 13 councillor, Lot Siziba told Southern Eye that it was regrettable that residents continue to defy council directives on the issue.

“We have been urging residents to desist from cultivating on stream banks, but they never listen. They are ploughing everywhere and causing soil erosion,” he said.

Siziba said councillors are discussing ways of educating residents to desist from such tendencies.

Every year, council is involved in run-ins with residents, as it tries to enforce by-laws related to urban agriculture and in particular stream bank cultivation.

Grinding poverty and loss of jobs have driven urban dwellers to augment their meagre incomes through growing crops, but at times indiscriminately.

Council spokesperson, Nesisa Mpofu said the local authority warned residents against stream bank cultivation before the start of the rainy season, but the advice had gone unheeded.

“Several awareness campaigns with community leaders and councillors were held at the municipal offices. Five wards were visited to assess the compliance,” she said.

Mpofu said the demarcation of protected areas was done last year and failure to adhere would have dire consequences.

“Demarcation of protected areas was done last year and we also engaged the residents before the rainy season,” she said.

“We are confiscating tools for those found cultivating along streambanks and issuing out tickets, while crops planted on these areas will be destroyed.”

Stream bank cultivation results in siltation and destruction of the environment and vegetation.

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