Let's help keep our cities clean

HARARE - Zimbabwe Tourism Authority chief executive Karikoga Kaseke touched a raw nerve this week when he pointed out that Harare, once known as the Sunshine City, is now one of the filthiest cities in southern Africa.

Kaseke blamed the city fathers for failing to do elementary work such as cutting grass and cleaning roads which are not only filled with litter but also a haven of potholes — a situation that is discouraging tourists from visiting.

While it is true that local government authorities are responsible for taking care of our society but it’s also important that we must realise our responsibilities to our society and environment — and do our part.

Shrugging off our shoulders of the litter and dirt, cursing the government and city councils is not entirely right.

Living in the society, being a part of the environment, we too have a moral responsibility to contribute to the environment we live in.

None of us would prefer to live in a dirty surrounding and there is hardly anyone who does not complain about unattended garbage, open potholes, filthy society and city councils not being prompt in their duties.

Since the colonial days, Zimbabweans have always loved to be in a society that is clean and green. We all are advocates for a neat and clean society, pollution-free environment — but how many of us do actually make an effort for that?

It is not uncommon to see citizens carelessly tossing away cigarette butts, banana peels, beer cans, newspapers, and “kaylites” among other rubbish on our streets.

We have an obligation to change this habit if we are to make Zimbabwe clean and green again.

As such, every citizen has a role to play to keep Zimbabwe clean and worth visiting.

The fight is not only for the cash-strapped and incapacitated councils, but that of every well-meaning Zimbabwean who have the nation at a heart.

Attitudes and habits of making public properties dumping ground for garbage must be changed by taking greater pride in the communities we live in.

We must emulate Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, which seems to have achieved a clean and litter-free environment.

Indeed, the city’s roundabouts are so well-swept and the grass so well-maintained that wedding couples sprint across the traffic to be photographed in the middle of them.

This has been achieved by a change in attitude and Rwandans coming together every last Saturday of the month to clean up their communities.

Zimbabwe does not need international aid to keep its communities clean. We can do it ourselves.

Comments (1)

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chastuchus - 15 April 2016

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