Posted Oct 02, 2009
Itezhi-tezhi October 2, 2009, ZANIS….Illegal settlers in the Namwala Game Management area in Itezhi Tezhi district, have been given up to Monday 5th October to vacate the area.
This is according to an eviction notice signed by ZAWA Director General Dr Steven Saiwana, Chiefs Shimbizhi, Kaingu and Chilyabufu and made available to ZANIS in Itezhi Tezhi today.
The settlers have been given an option of either moving to Masasabi resettlement Scheme or their places of origin.
Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) and three chiefs have warned the settlers that their failure to comply to with the directive would result in the use of force.
“This is to inform you that you have been given up to October 5, 2009 to move away from your current settlements to either Masasabi resettlement scheme or wherever you originate from. We are encouraging you to voluntarily move before the given date or you will be moved by force,” stated the notice in part.
The notice stated that the illegal settlers in the game management area have been notified by their royal highnesses and ZAWA about the illegality of the settlements and the damages they have caused to the environment.
The agreement to evict the illegal settlers in the Namwala Game Management area was signed on 21 September 2009.
According to the statement, the meeting which was held at the ZAWA head office, was attended by officials from the Zambia Wildlife Authority traditional leaders and area Member of parliament.
The statement indicates that the three chiefs and ZAWA also agreed that the relocation exercise shall be carried out in conjunction with the traditional rulers, the community resource board (CRBs) the district commissioner’s office, ZAWA and the Zambia police and those funds for monitoring of the exercise will be provided by both the CRB and ZAWA.
The chiefs and ZAWA also agreed that the illegal settlers will relocate at their own expense and that voluntary relocation is expected to be completed by October 5, thereafter evictions will be carried out.
And ZAWA officials said during a District Development Co-ordinating Committee(DDCC ) meeting held at Itezhi-tezhi council chamber yesterday that officers from Mumbwa and other places will arrive in Itezhi-tezhi today in readiness for the mass evictions on Monday.
The eviction of illegal settlers in Namwala Game Management area has been a thorny and dragging issue.