BY BONNY MUKOMBOZI
MUSANZE: The Minister of Lands, Environment, Forestry, Water and Mines, Christophe Bazivamo has asked settlers along rivers and lakes’ shores to vacate a radius of 5 kilometres.
Bazivamo who has been on an upcountry afforestration campaign also advised settlers to plant more trees along the water bodies. In the end, he said, there will be limited drawing of water for irrigation from River Yanze in Rulindo.
“The only way to maintain water in rivers, lakes and underground is by keeping trees. It is a crime to cut down trees without official permission even if the forest is private,’’ Bazivamo said.
He gave an example of when river Yanze was re-channelled in 1987 by Duhnic Adri, its flow decreased causing water levels to go down, hence reducing available water for use both to Electrogaz and other users. A Commission, set up in March 2007, has recommended that cultivation along rivers should stop and there must be constant security to monitor the activities as a way of solving the problem along Ruhondo in Musanze.