BY MOSES MUGUGUNYEKI
POLICE in Mashonaland East province have warned people to desist from indiscriminately cutting down trees.
Provincial police spokesperson Inspector Simon Chazovachii made the remarks yesterday during the Marondera tree planting event at Ruware Primary School.
The tree planting event, which involved six schools in the district, was made possible through the support of the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS), Forestry Commission, Nyaradzo Group and Environmental Management Agency, among others.
“As police, we encourage the planting of trees and protection of our forests,” Chazovachii said.
“If we see you cutting down trees for firewood, we will not hesitate to arrest you because it’s unlawful. If we see you cutting down trees for the sake of cutting down trees, the police will arrest you.”
Chief Svosve said the protection of forests was everyone’s responsibility.
“Our forests are our heritage. It is our responsibility to guard against deforestation and help bring offenders to book,” he said.
Marondera assistant district development co-ordinator Memory Mukonda urged people to grow trees.
“Since trees play a pivotal role in our day-to-day lives as evidenced above, it is not only the Forestry Commission’s duty to conserve our forests, but every one of us has a role to play in the management of our forest resources,” she said.
“Therefore, I urge all of us to make sure that our forests are conserved and more trees are planted. By planting more trees, it will contribute to global reforestation efforts, restoring lost forests, repairing damaged ecosystems and mitigating climate change.”
In a speech read on his behalf, ZRCS secretary-seneral Elias Hwenga said his organisation was proud to be part of the initiative as they complemented the national efforts in the fight to mitigate the impact of climate
“It is our strong belief as the Red Cross that trees play a crucial role in the fight against climate change and that they should be protected actively,” Hwenga said.
The theme for this year’s National Tree Planting Day is Trees and Forests for Ecosystem Restoration and Improved Livelihoods, while the tree of the year is the Musekesa in Shona, Caramel foot in English and botanically, Piliostigma Thoningii.
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