$20m for Save Val­ley Camp­fire projects

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Walter Mswazie

THE Euro­pean Union (EU) has availed $20 mil­lion to re­sus­ci­tate Camp­fire projects and ca­pac­i­tate in­dige­nous ben­e­fi­cia­ries at Save Val­ley Con­ser­vancy in Masvingo prov­ince, a Cabi­net Min­is­ter has said.

Speak­ing to jour­nal­ists after of­fi­ci­at­ing at the grad­u­a­tion cer­e­mony of 184 wildlife man­age­ment stu­dents at Mushandike College of Wildlife in Mashava on Fri­day, the Min­is­ter of En­vi­ron­ment, Wa­ter and Cli­mate, Op­pah Muchin­guri-Kashiri, said Cabi­net re­solved that all con­ser­van­cies should fall un­der the Depart­ment of Na­tional Parks and Wildlife Man­age­ment Author­ity.

She said Save Con­ser­vancy is cov­ered un­der a Bi­lat­eral In­vest­ment Pro­mo­tion and Pro­tec­tion Agree­ment (BIPPA) which the EU has un­der­taken to sup­port.

The Min­is­ter said an agree­ment has since been signed be­tween the EU and the Zim­bab­wean Gov­ern­ment over the re­sus­ci­ta­tion of Camp­fire pro­grammes in or­der to as­sist com­mu­ni­ties.

“The Euro­pean Union has availed $8 mil­lion for the re­sus­ci­ta­tion of Camp­fire pro­grammes for Save Val­ley con­ser­van­cies un­der BIPPA.

“The money is meant for the de­vel­op­ment of ir­ri­ga­tion schemes for com­mu­ni­ties around the con­ser­vancy while $12 mil­lion, which will be re­leased in batches, will cater for the build­ing of ca­pac­i­ties of com­mu­ni­ties so that they im­prove their lives,” said Min­is­ter Muchin­guri-Kashiri.

She un­der­scored the need to sup­port com­mu­ni­ties around con­ser­van­cies to en­sure that there is no con­flict.

“Cabi­net re­solved the issue of Save Val­ley Con­ser­vancy two years ago that it should fall un­der the Depart­ment of Na­tional Parks and Wildlife Man­age­ment Author­ity. The EU has of­fered to as­sist in build­ing ca­pac­i­ties for com­mu­ni­ties around the con­ser­vancy so that they im­prove their lives.

“There is an issue of wa­ter where dams will be con­structed for ir­ri­ga­tion pur­poses and do­mes­tic use since peo­ple can­not set­tle where there is no wa­ter.

“For as long as the com­mu­nity sees value and ac­cru­ing ben­e­fits from the con­ser­van­cies, there won’t be any con­flict be­tween peo­ple and wildlife.

“You will not see them de­stroy­ing the perime­ter fence at the con­ser­vancy; they will live in har­mony with the an­i­mals.”

The Min­is­ter be­moaned poach­ing of wildlife and tim­ber and said there is a need for new anti-poach­ing skills to counter modern day poach­ing. — @wal­terbm­swazie.

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