Farmer drags govt to court over deforestation

via Bulawayo24 NEWS | Farmer drags govt to court over deforestation. by Fidelis Munyoro 13 June 2014

A farmer has taken Government to the High Court seeking to compel it to stop deforestation that is threatening extinction of indigenous trees, especially in prime tobacco growing areas.

Mr Never Gasho, a farmer in Karoi, said the alarming rate of deforestation in tobacco farming areas prompted him to sue Government.

In an application he filed at the High Court on Tuesday, Mr Gasho listed the Parliament of Zimbabwe, Ministers for Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development, Environment, Water and Climate, Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, Environment Management Agency and the Chiefs Council of Zimbabwe as respondents.

“We are all racing against time as people are cutting trees every minute indiscriminately in preparation for the next tobacco growing season,” he said.

Mr Gasho said the first to fifth respondents must be compelled to take the necessary measures in terms of their constitutional mandate to protect indigenous trees.

He said the Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate should formulate policies that hinder tobacco farmers from using indigenous trees during curing.

Mr Gasho argues that no person should be allowed to venture into tobacco farming unless he or she has capacity to use other alternative energy source.

“The indiscriminate cutting down of trees has a serious effect on our weather pattern. ZimAsset places emphasis on value addition. In my opinion the first face value is land and its natural resources. The depletion of trees, however, reduces the value of our land as it slowly turns into a desert. Once the land turns into a desert we cannot give back the value of our indigenous trees,” he said.

He said the situation obtaining in the tobacco farming areas calls for urgent attention and this could only be resolved by the superior courts. – See more at:


  • comment-avatar
    Angela Wigmore 9 years ago

    One farmer who seems to have his head screwed on the right way!

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    DubboZimbo 9 years ago

    Well done it is good to see someone standing up against further pillaging. Tobacco should be cured with coal not locally cut wood. Now let’s see if the legal system will prevail or if ZANU will have this swept under the carpet?

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    harper 9 years ago

    How many poor people in Mozambique have drowned in floods caused by deforestation in Zimbabwe?

  • comment-avatar
    saundy 9 years ago

    Well done Mr Gasho for this initiative which I hope & pray will bear the necessary fruit and not in your being ostracised or worse. You deserve the support of all right minded people.

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    Gomogranny 9 years ago

    We have an erradication campaign against Alien Wattle and GUM trees where we live. The Wattle Trees escaped from their plantations and have led to increasingly disastrous fire seasons for all inhabitants. The gum trees have dried up almost 21 of our 26 perennial streams in our areas and a young child died when one of these old trees collapsed on their house. A campaign being led by unemployed youth (Called Working for Water w4w.)has started removing these trees and selling the wood to feed their families – it is a brilliant scheme.
    Government should subsidise the transport of this massive energy source of good burning wood to go to those areas to cure tobacco)

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    Mena Bona 9 years ago

    Mr Gasho for President and Never another like the crazed one Zimbabwe it has.