By Michael Kaluba

Lands minister jean Kapata says government’s decision to de-gazette the Maposa forest between Luanshya and Kitwe on the Copperbelt is mainly due to urbanization which has led to encroachment in the said forest thereby forcing the state to take action.

Ms Kapata explains that the government has had to de-gazette various forest reserves at the recommendation of technocrats for varying reasons including urbanization, requests by local people for more land and over population in urban areas leading to a need for more houses.

Recently, senior lecturer and researcher in the school of natural sciences at the Copperbelt University, professor Felix kalaba asked government to consult widely before de-gazetting certain national forest reserves arguing that both the pace at which these decisions have been made recently and the reasons advanced, are questionable and hampering Zambia’s efforts to fight climate change.

But ms Kapata has called on stakeholders who are asking government to reverse its decision to de-gazette the Maposa forest reserve no. 4 on the Copperbelt, to formally engage her ministry with their proposal as opposed to lobbying through the media.


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