By Anyway Yotamu.
HARARE – Minister of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Mangaliso Ndlovu yesterday announced the names of the new board chairpersons for the Forestry Commission and Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks).
Mrs Veronica Gundu Jakarasi and Dr Agrippa Sora are the new chairpersons of the Forestry Commission and ZimParks boards.
Minister Ndlovu announced the appointments during a media briefing.
“I want to acknowledge and appreciate the boards and management of the two parastatals for progress made in improving the operations and performance,” he said.
“To further strengthen the corporate Governance structures of the two parastatals, it is my honour to announce the appointment of the chairpersons of the two parastatals.”
Mrs Jakarasi is a banker with vast experience in environmental and climate change areas. She holds a masters degree in environmental policy and planning and is currently studying towards a doctorate.
Dr Agrippa Sora is an academic and educator.
Minister Ndlovu encouraged the new board chairpersons to work as a team and address the challenges that are currently faced by the parastatals.
“Mrs Jakarasi, I want you to redouble your efforts in afforestation program.
“While in prior years National Tree Planting efforts led by the Forestry Commission would plant 10 million trees or less annually and I am pleased to note that the figure almost doubled this year,” he said.
Minister Ndlovu urged Mrs Jakarasi to strengthen the management and deployment of the afforestation fund so that the rate of planting trees for tobacco curing exceeds the rate of harvesting on an annual basis.
He advised Dr Sora to institute a skills and placement audit and review the lease conditions of the various conservatives and make appropriate recommendations to government.
“One of your board’s main challenge now is research and being scientific research institution you need skilled personnel,” he said.
Minister Ndlovu urged Dr Sora to engage the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and various member states for financial assistance to assist Zimbabwe in conservation efforts and also in dealing with human wildlife conflict.
The board members were tasked to design and execute projects that are meaningful and are in line with NDS 1 and vision 2030.