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: http://bulawayo24.com/index-id-news-sc-national-byo-48927.html#sthash.cVBHQ35T.dpuf