By Lemuel Chekai
Residents occupying wetlands in and around the capital have expressed fear of another rainy season after the Meteorological Services Department (MSD) projected normal to above normal rainfall for the 2021/22 season.
In a seasonal rainfall forecast report dated September 2, the MSD projected that Region 1, which encompasses Harare Metropolitan, much of Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Mashonaland Central, north-eastern parts of Midlands and most of Manicaland, will experience normal-to-above normal rainfall – a similar forecast to last year’s projection that saw hundreds of households flooded.
In a snip survey carried out by this publication in parts of Harare that were affected by floods last season, some residents have already put in place makeshift measures to prevent water from sipping through household doors.
“We can’t have a repeat of last year, the losses were terrible, we need to brace for the worst,” Budiriro resident Nigel Mukumba told this publication while laying bricks for a higher door step.
This is despite the National Housing and Social Amenities Minister, Daniel Garwe’s directive for Harare City Council to relocate people who were allocated stands on Budiriro’s wetlands earlier this year.
According to the residents, though the city council declined to comment on the matter, nothing has materialized since the directive.
“We had not invested any emotions to the directive as we knew no action would accompany the words. This is why many around here had come up with adaptive mechanisms,” another Budiriro resident Kegina Marawu said.
Meanwhile, on a positive note regarding wetlands invasion saga, the Supreme court upheld the decision nullifying development on Monavale Wetland last week.
The development comes after an application by Biti Law Chambers against invasion of the wetland.
“We are pleased to report that the Supreme Court upheld decision nullifying an environmental impact assessment and development permit that had been obtained by a Harare developer on a wetland in Monavale ” a statement from the law firm reads.
‘This article was produced with the financial support of WAN-IFRA Media Freedom. Its contents are the sole responsibility of <Lemuel Chekai/BustopTV> and do not necessarily reflect the views of the WAN-IFRA Media Freedom,WAN-IFRA FR, or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.’