HARARE – Churches in Harare’s Kambuzuma and Rugare high density suburbs have taken the initiative of cleaning up their communities as the local authority grapples with waste management.
The Fraternity of Churches (Fraternity) —with 18-member churches — collaborated with City of Harare, Miracle Mission, couriers Swift, residents’ associations, Environmental Management Agency (Ema) and local leadership, to raise awareness on the importance of environmental protection.
Pastor Phanuel Goredema from Fraternity said the initiative was a result of churches, noting Kambuzuma was sitting on a time bomb because of irresponsible garbage dumping by residents.
“We then decided to network with organisations to see how we could save our community and consci entise residents on what to do with garbage,” he said.
The cleanup, which saw the participation of over 200 residents, was hailed by Ema.
“We were only invited to this successful event, it is good to see communities which are custodians of their environment and who do not wait for Ema or other organisations to clean up for them,” Ema education and publicity officer Llyod Munetsi said.
“It means people are now appreciating their environment. People now need to practise to separate their garbage into degradable and non-degradable rubbish.”
He said research has shown 70 percent of the rubbish from homes is degradable material which can be used for composts.
Kambuzuma residents said they gained a lot of knowledge from the cleanup and were ready to police their environment.
“Now the City of Harare should play its part and collect bins so that people won’t have an excuse to dump rubbish anyway,” said Anifa Hwingwiri.
A population boom has overwhelmed local authorities’ service delivery capacity and the results have been catastrophic.
Since 2008, when Zimbabwe’s economy collapsed, the country has witnessed a perennial outbreak of medieval diseases such as cholera and typhoid.
Also picking up litter was the legislator for Kambuzuma, Willias Madzimure and councillors who said they had been invited by their community. – Bridget Mananavire