by Wallace Mawire
Ramsar Secretary General, Sir Anada Tiega is visiting Zimbabwe to commemorate the 2013 national World Wetlands Day commemoration.
The commemoration is today being held at the Malilangombe wetland in ward 23 of Matobo district in Matebeleland province in Zimbabwe.
The Zimbabwean commemorations are being held under the theme:Wetlands take care of water-protect them.
World Wetlands Day commemoration in Zimbabwe. Picture:Wallace Mawire
According to Zimbabwe’s Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Management, Francis Nhema, Zimbabwe has seven sites which are designated as Ramsar sites.
“These are Monavale Vlei,Cleveland Dam,Chinhoyi Caves,Mana Pools,Victoria Falls National Park,Driefontein Grasslands and Lake Chivero,” Nhema said.
He urged the nation to take stock of their actions to evaluate contribution to wetlands degradation.
“Wetlands deliver essential environmental,social and economic goods and services such as local level climate control, flood mitigation,food and act as regulators and providers of water.The link between water resources management and the wise use of wetlands cannot be separated,” Minister Nhema said.
The theme for this year’s World Wetlands Day on 2 February is Wetlands and Water Management.
The key objective of World Wetlands Day 2013 is to raise people’s awareness of the interdependence between water and wetlands, to highlight ways to ensure the equitable sharing of water between different stakeholder groups and to understand that without wetlands there will be no water.
The Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, called the Ramsar Convention, is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.
The Ramsar Convention is the only global environmental treaty that deals with a particular ecosystem. The treaty was adopted in the Iranian city of Ramsar in 1971 and the Convention’s member countries cover all geographic regions of the planet.
The Convention’s mission is “the conservation and wise use of all wetlands through local and national actions and international cooperation, as a contribution towards achieving sustainable development throughout the world”.