THE Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has called upon residents to be whistleblowers by alerting authorities on the presence of sand poachers within their vicinities.
This comes as sand poachers have been leaving huge craters and open shafts that have claimed the lives of many Bulawayo citizens.
This month alone, at least three people have drowned while swimming or bathing in the pools that have filled up in areas where sand poachers operate.
BCC senior public relations officer Nesisa Mpofu said the practice was now worrisome and urged residents not to buy pit sand from unlicensed individuals.
“These people are selling the pit sand to us residents and it is our duty to question them and demand licences from them before we buy the sand.
“Once the person fails to provide proof of permission from the city council, then you have to alert us so that we deal with them. That is one way we can achieve sanity in the city,” she said.
Mpofu made these remarks during an online engagement of BCC and residents organised by the Women’s Institute of Leadership Development (WILD) on service delivery.
Mpofu said pits left behind by these sand poachers were becoming a menace to residents.
“We have lost lives to these pits and as residents we need to be alert and make sure that such offenders are brought to book,” she said.
Mpofu encouraged residents to work hand in glove with the city fathers in fighting environmental woes in the city.
Earlier this week, BCC began filling up and destroying some of these hazardous pits in Pumula North, Luveve, Nkulumane, Cowdray Park and Entumbane suburbs.