By Tendai Guvamombe

The delay in the rehabilitation of the degraded land in Warren Park has sparked fierce criticism from residents’ association amid environmental and social concerns.

The degraded area which is identified with Warren Park mountains and cemetery has over the years saw people suffering from robbery attacks. The land turned into pits due to gravel mining in the area.

On the other hand environmentalists have been also calling for an imminent plan of action to restore the degraded land.

This publication also discovered that the Council has been announcing a stand alone budget meant for the rehabilitation project of Warren Park but the funds have not been released for their intended use.

In an interview with Precious Shumba Director of Harare Residents Trust , blasted the Council for failing to deliver on their promises to spearhead the rehabilitation of Warren Park.

“The issue of Warren Park has been budgeted for years but they can’t even allocate small amounts towards small actions. They will be doing things for the show.”

“The City of Harare has never been serious on the implementation of programmes that are supposed to be taking place in Harare. This is the reason why they are failing to address the rehabilitation of the degraded land in Warren Park. That issue should have been addressed way back. “

“The council does not have the wheel power to address issues as they always craft nicely on paper but lacking implementation. You see that they have new polices but lacks implementation.”

“They have good polices with poor implementation and when they fail they always appear to be resolving problems by producing Press Statements to silence critics and residence in Harare.”

In a follow up interview with Lameck Chipfunde Director City of Harare Environment Division, said the Warren Rehabilitation is now a work in progress which commenced with the reclamation of the degraded spaces.

“The issue of Warren Rehabilitation is now a work in progress. The project is having the reclaiming of all the degraded spaces before moving to other areas of implementation.”

Suggestions coming from the environmentalists indicate that Council should consider striking strategic partnerships with abled private players to implement environmentally inclined projects at the disputed site.

These may include establishment of a work and leisure centre with green tourism facilities and and afforestation programme.