HomeLocal NewsDCP slams HCC for settling people on wetlands

DCP slams HCC for settling people on wetlands

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By PROBLEM MASAU/SHARON BUWERIMWE
HARARE City Council has been accused of making urban dwellers more vulnerable to natural and environmental disasters by settling people in disaster-prone areas such as wetlands.

Speaking last week at the Cyclone Idai Recovery Project hosted by INOPS in collaboration with the World Bank, Department of Civil Protection (DCP) chief director Nathan Nkomo said councils should do an environmental assessment before creating settlements.

“You all know of what is happening in Budiriro, it’s an illegal settlement not suitable for human habitation. Those people were settled there by the cosmopolitan city of this country. And when the area experiences some floods, they have the courage to phone the centre, to say there are people who are being affected by floods, when they have settled people in that area,” he said.

“So we want to devolve to make our third tier of government become even more responsible and more accountable to the ratepayers. What I’m saying is that the local authorities must also assume the responsibility as the third tier of government according to the 2013 Constitution of Zimbabwe. Whatever the government is doing, the local authority must also do, so that they behave in a manner as expected by the central government.”

Nkomo said Cyclone Idai, which left a trail of destruction and scores of people dead in the eastern part of the country, has taught officials the need to decentralise disaster risk management offices.

Cabinet has ratified the Disaster and Risk Management Bill to ensure preparedness and swift response to the increasing disasters in the country.

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