Ema must delegate functions to councils

HARARE - The Environmental Management Agency (Ema) appears overwhelmed in its bid to deal with the multiplicity of challenges affecting the capital city and should delegate some of its responsibilities to the city fathers to ease the workload and bring about efficiency in the preservation of the environment.

Town planning expert Percy Toriro told the Daily News on Sunday that it has not been possible for Ema to know all the developments taking place in Harare hence it is recommended that the agency must delegate some of its functions to the local planning authority.

He said environmental management in the city has been failing because of the disharmony between Ema and the Harare City Council (HCC), adding that the destruction of wetlands was mostly because people cannot differentiate between ownership and use of land, which require different approvals.

“Monavale Vlei, Ashdown Park, Ballantyne Park, Greendale and the Newands Corridor are actual examples of wetlands being developed in an unsustainable manner and some under threat. We need to deal with corruption in permit issuance to preserve them,” Toriro said.

HCC has been battling with the destruction of wetlands through the development of residential properties and peri-urban cultivation.

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