Harare- The mayor of Zimbabwe’s capital city, Harare has commended Rwanda for taking the lead in showcasing to the world the immense socio-economic benefits derived from a clean environment.
Councillor Herbert Gomba made the remarks yesterday after Rwanda’s ambassador to Zimbabwe, James Musoni led a team from the embassy and staff from the national carrier, RwandAir, on a clean-up exercise of a cholera-prone high-density suburb in Harare, Glen Norah.
A cholera epidemic ravaged Harare’s high-density suburbs last September – claiming 32 lives from a total 3,349 suspected cases.
The epidemic was blamed on poor hygienic standards compounded by inadequate supplies of safe piped water, which led people to use alternative unsafe supplies such as unprotected wells and boreholes.
Gomba urged Harare residents to take advantage of the example shown by Rwanda and clean up their environs to ensure they do not expose themselves to waterborne diseases as has happened in the past.
“Rwanda remains one of the good examples in terms of cleanness,” the mayor said. “Let’s take advantage of the exercise to go back to our homes and clean up our residential houses.”
Zimbabwe’s Minister for State for Harare Metropolitan Province, Oliver Chidawu thanked the Rwandan envoy, saying Harare was beginning to take shape as a result the clean-up exercise.
Musoni told Glen Norah residents who participated in the clean-up exercise that such programmes were important in their general wellbeing.
Musoni said the national clean-up campaign, which was launched by President Emmerson Mnangagwa early this year, will have social and economic benefits to Zimbabwe.
“I am happy that this is happening because I know the benefits. This is something we started a long way ago and I know the benefits,” Musoni told the residents.
“We have to associate ourselves with this exercise because we know the benefits.”
Musoni said that RwandAir was participating in Zimbabwe’s clean-up programme as a way of appreciating the warm welcome the company has received in Harare.
“We are here to collaborate with RwandaAir which has been operating in Zimbabwe for the past two years. We are here to appreciate that we have been received well by the government of Zimbabwe,” he said.
RwandaAir operates a direct flight between Kigali and Harare. It recently introduced a Harare-Cape Town direct flight.