First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa has called on companies to consider investing heavily in the recycling industry to minimise the amount of garbage in the environment.
She said this in a speech read on her behalf by Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa during a clean-up campaign along Plymouth Road in Workington industrial area yesterday.
She implored the business community to adopt standards that advocate cleanliness in factories and surrounding areas to ward off diseases associated with dirty environments such as cholera and diarrhoea.
“The recycling industry possesses numerous downstream opportunities as well as backward linkages,” she said.
The First Lady said the recycling and green industries globally were growing at an impressive rate of about four percent per annum, hence the need for local entrepreneurs to consider venturing into the sector.
She also called on companies to improve product quality to have global appeal and, consequently, boost their revenues.
“The global trend is that products that meet quality standards get immediate acceptance worldwide. We cannot continue to have only about one percent of our companies being ISO certified. This is unacceptable and we can only continue with this trend at our peril.”
At Sunway City Industrial Park in Ruwa where VP Kembo Mohadi was expected to lead the clean-up, the business community said it had embraced the programme through working towards the promotion of recycling to ensure a clean environment.
Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) representative Mrs Getrude Mashonganyika said the business community was strongly behind the initiative.
“Let us all commit to practising sustainable waste management. We must willingly and collectively bring illegal dumping and littering to a quick end,” she said.
“As business, we have embraced the call to clean up and as you may have noticed, our premises and surroundings are generally clean.”
Industrialist Mr Davison Norupiri commended the clean-up initiative saying it would help in shaping behaviour change among stakeholders and individuals.
“We are actually seeing a total change of our environment. We are seeing a change of behaviour by the participants. What we have done as the industrialists is we are now recycling our products just to make sure we keep our environment clean,” said Mr Norupiri.
In Graniteside where Vice President Constantino Chiwenga was expected to lead the clean-up, 18 companies participated at the event which started at 8am.
Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries CEO Mrs Sekai Kuhwarika said: “As business we have embraced the call to clean up and, as you have noticed, our premises and surroundings in our companies are generally clean.”
She said industry stood ready to make the 2020 edition of the clean-up campaign bigger and better.
In Masvingo Province, the Minister of State for Provincial Affairs, Cde Ezra Chadzamira, led proceedings at Jerera Growth Point
Cde Chadzamira said it was pleasing to note that communities at district level were adhering to President Mnangagwa’s call to keep a clean environment. he said.
Zaka Central MP Cde Davison Svuure said the clean-up campaign should be an ongoing programme and called for the establishment of proper disposal of waste systems in communities.
In Beitbridge, the clean-up was at Shule Shule Business Centre in Ward 5, where the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) donated three motorcycles to Beitbridge Municipality.
EMA district head Mrs Nompumelelo Chigwinya said the motorcycles would be used by members of an environmental unit in the local authority to monitor and enforce issues relating to environment in the town.
She said the unit was a pilot project, adding that more stakeholders should also capacitate communities to deal with cleanliness.
Acting mayor Councillor Takavingei Mahachi said communities should take a leading role in enforcing environmental management laws.
In Manicaland, Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba thanked captains of industry and their teams in Mutare for coming out in numbers to honour the Presidential declaration to keep a clean environment.
The clean-up was held in the Nyakamete industrial area.
In a speech read on her behalf by Ministry of Industry and Commerce Provincial Deputy Director Mr Kupukani Masunungure, the minister urged stakeholders to ensure that adequate litter receptacles were placed at strategic places in the area.
The clean-up campaign was led by the CZI in conjunction with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.
Tanganda Tea Company hosted the event.
In Guruve, there was a low turnout for this month’s national clean-up campaign.
Guruve district becomes the seventh district to host the monthly clean-up campaign with plans to go to Mbire next month, as Mashonaland Central province endeavours to cover all districts, towns and major business centres.
Acting provincial development coordinator Mr Cosmas Chiringa who represented Minister of State for Mashonaland Central Provincial Affairs Senator Monica Mavhunga, urged rural district councils to identify land-fills for proper disposal of litter.
He said although Bindura was the provincial capital, it was failing to collect refuse in homes and business centres.
In Mashonaland West Province, the clean-up exercise was at Chirundu Border where Provincial Affairs Minister Mary Mliswa-Chikoka led the proceedings.
The clean-up was followed by provincial World Aids Day commemorations.
Government employees and those from the private sector including Chirundu residents participated in the monthly clean-up programme.
In the Midlands Province, the exercise took place at Chachacha Rural Service Centre, which was the first time that the clean-up was hosted in a rural setting.
Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Larry Mavima said: “I strongly believe that as we all act responsibly and shun litter, it is possible for Zimbabwe and Midlands in particular, to attain a clean, safe and healthy environment that supports an empowered society and a sustainable and growing economy by 2030,” he said.