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Minister of Green Economy and Environment  Mike Mposha has vowed to end illegalities in the forestry subsector by stiffening laws to make offences non-bailable.

Mr. Mposha said this during a familiarization tour of the Forestry Department Headquarters in Lusaka.

He expressed concern about the high levels of illegalities, saying even nationals from neighboring countries are crossing into Zambia to unlawfully cut trees and produce charcoal.

Mr. Mposha said Forestry Officers that are involved in illegalities will face dismissal and jail term.

“I want this chaos to end. I want stiffer laws that will even deal with our officers. We give you the job to protect the forests, but you go out there committing illegalities, you will come and face the law. We will not just fire you but we will also take you to prison,” said Mr. Mposha.

He said simple fines were not deterrent.

Mr. Mposha also said vehicles used for transporting illegally harvested timber and charcoal must be forfeited to the State without compromise.

And Mr. Mposha said the ban on Mukula tree will continue.


By Eva Hatontola