....as local authority takes stock of already dire Covid-19 challenges
Tendai Mbede/ Blessed Mandaza
CHIREDZI- With the province continuing to receive heavy rains, with some flash floods being experienced, the Chiredzi Rural District Council’s (RDC) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Ailes Baloyi has given an assurance that the local authority stands prepared to tackle any form of flooding which may befall the district.
Chiredzi was among the districts that were affected by Cyclone Idai last rain season and a loss count of over $10 million was recorded in destroyed infrastructure.
Many people are also suffering due to the Covid-19 induced lockdown which has seen livelihoods being detroyed in the town's agriculture based economy.
Baloyi said there was need for a steadfast strategy to counter the effects of climate change including developing infrastructure whose standards could withstand any form of cyclones or heavy winds.
"There are six predicted cyclones this year and we are still gathering resources to counter them. In terms of infrastructure, we need developed paradigms and review of standards and guidance on designing schools, roads and clinics as authorities," said Baloyi.
He said cyclones are causing siltation to big water bodies like the Runde River which affected the Chilonga Irrigation Scheme until government intervened to revive it.
Early this week, a storm destroyed crops and houses in Wards 7 and 16.
“With the help of the Zimbabwe Resilience Building Fund, we will come up with a tangible and more effective resolution on how to react and adapt to these climate changes.
“We are consulting the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) in the formulation of by-laws to protect national climate policies and national climate change response strategies,” said Baloyi.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Munesu Munodawafa, chaired a stakeholders meeting at Chitsanga Hall last week to map a way forward in protecting the environment and people during environmental disasters.