Fish poachers contaminate dams

BY SILAS NKALA

TRADITIONAL leaders in Gwanda North’s ward 2 have warned villagers against fish-poaching using mosquito nets at local dams.

The warning came amid concerns that illegal fishing activities were polluting dams and causing them to run dry fast, a situation which has resulted in livestock going without drinking water.

Most of the major dams in ward 2’s Dambashoko and Datata villages such as Ntando Kazulu, Datata, and Mahlabezulu dams’ water levels have seriously deteriorated amid fears they could run dry before the next rain season.

Illegal fishing activities caused by food shortages are said to be rife in the wards. The local leadership has warned perpetrators that deterrent measures would be taken against all those found on the wrong side of the law.

“We are noticing that our local dams are fast-running dry and becoming muddy, which is also a threat to our livestock that may not have anywhere to drink water or may get trapped by the mud. There are some of you who are fast-tracking the drying of these dams by illegal fishing using mosquito nets,” Sibindi said at a funeral wake.

“Let me warn you, just stop those activities because once we catch you, you will regret. We will not allow people to disturb the only available sources of water that we have just because they want to catch fish.”

In a related issue, ward 2 councillor Zwelibanzi Mpofu said the stock-feed which villagers used to buy at $11 for a 50kg bag was now supplied at a cost of ZWL$100 per bag, which most villagers said was not affordable to them.

Drought has hit Gwanda hard, with some livestock farmers said to be losing their cattle.

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