from DANIEL JONES in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
VICTORIA FALLS, (CAJ News) – TOURISM operators in Victoria Falls have teamed up to clean up the tourism city and enhance its pristine status.
A committee has been formed to mobilise stakeholders to pledge to the iconic city’s cleanliness.
Called the Pristine Victoria Falls Society (PVFS), the initiative has lofty ambitions to make Victoria Falls the cleanest city in Africa, in line with modern trends of greening tourism.
Members of the committee include Anald Musonza, who is Victoria Falls Safari Lodge General manager and chairman of Matabeleland North Hospitality Association of Zimbabwe.
Other members are Shearwater chief executive Mike Davis, and Wild Horizons chief executive Gary Archer.
John Laing of Zimbabwe Professional Guides Association, Norbert Ndlovu of 3 Choirs and Sibongile Hlabangana of Shearwater complete the team.
“We are in a national park and a world heritage site hence this aspiration to make Victoria Falls the cleanest city,” said Davis, the association chair.
He added, “Keeping this tourism city is our moral obligation as custodians of this Seventh Natural Wonder of the World.”
The initiative will see the town being zoned into sectors, streets, blocks and 50 metre stretches, each allocated to a group that will be responsible for cleaning.
Businesses and individuals will then be asked to sign a pledge to take on responsibility for a selected particular area.
Its major activity is leading periodic cleanups.
Residents and stakeholders will make a pledge promising a collective responsibility to deliver a pristine zone in their allocated area of Victoria Falls.
So far, the grouping has managed to attract various players in the city’s tourism industry.
These include Batonka and Pioneers, Ele-Crew, Liquorama, Lookout Cafe, Luke Brown, Matetsi Victoria Falls, Pariah State, Shearwater Adventure, and Shongwe.
Others are Spencers Creek, Syamuswi Curio Vendors, Three Choirs, Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, Victoria Falls Bungee, Wild Horizons, Wilderness Safaris, Xtranet Solutions, Zambezi Helicopter Company and ZPGA.
The initiative to spruce Victoria Falls complements the national effort whereby the first Friday of each month is set aside for a cleanup.
Residents in each town clean their surroundings.
The initiative has however been on the hold because of COVID-19 pandemic.
Musonza said PVFS is a private sector-driven cleanup campaign geared towards keeping Victoria Falls attractive to tourists.
“In essence this compliments the cleanup campaign initiated by the government. The private sector effort has taken this principle to ensure our environment is clean and safe for our residents, guests and wildlife alike on a daily basis,” Musonza said.
He urged the local city council, schools and whole community to embrace the initiative.
Victoria Falls already is the first city to attain herd immunity after more than three quarters of its population of around 110 000 vaccinated against COVID-19.
This also makes it one of the safest destinations in the world in the wake of the global pandemic.
Kigali, Rwanda’s capital city, is said to be the cleanest city in Africa.
– CAJ News