By Martin Mawaya
Midlands province is among the provinces at high risk of veld fires, Minister of information, publicity, and broadcasting services honorable Monica Mutsvangwa has said while presenting the 2021 veld fires management strategies at a post-cabinet press briefing in Harare recently.
She said Midlands, Matebeleland North, Matebeleland South, and Masvingo provinces are at the high risk of veld fires, while Mashonaland West, Mashonaland Central, and Manicaland are at extreme risk.
She added that the country is generally in the high-risk category of 65,2% to the extreme risk of category 24,7% of veld fires outbreak as a result of good rainfall in the 2020/2021 season.
She said the veld fires remain the most threatening factor to the environment.
“Uncontrolled veld fires remains the most threatening factor on Zimbabwe’s forests, pastures, crop, property, and food security,” she explained.
Minister Mutsvangwa revealed that the cabinet has since approved the 2021 veld fire management strategy.
“With the prediction of 89,9% of the country being in the high to extreme fire risk, the cabinet has approved the 2021 veld fire strategy to reduce the fires,” said the Minister.
The Minister said conducting of farm-level fire awareness blitz, sensitizing farmers and communities on the environmental provision on veld fires management, inspections to monitor compliance to fire preparedness protocols, fireguard construction, hay bailing as well as thatch grass cutting are among the key strategies in place to combat and reduce veld fires.