By Ruth Chayinda

Various Stakeholders have praised Government’s stance to cancel mining operations in the Lower Zambezi National Park

The Stakeholders that include Environmental Defenders, Activists and Civil Society Organisations; say the step to cancel the decision letter for Mwembeshi Resources Limited to mine in the lower Zambezi sets a new precedence with regard to the exploration of mineral resources in Zambia.

In a joint statement released to ZNBC News, the stakeholders said there is no need to politicise the decision made by the Ministry to cancel the environmental permission to mine.

They have since recommended that Government fully withdraws the mining license issued by the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development for the mining project in the Lower Zambezi National Park.

And the Stakeholders have advised Government and stakeholders to engage the people in Luangwa to come up with viable options and proposals to improve their livelihoods by leveraging on the unique ecological and environmental economy of the district.

They have further called on Government to enact legislation that will prohibit all forms of mining in ecologically sensitive areas.

The Stakeholders have also urged the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development, to desist from issuing mining licences in ecologically and environmentally sensitive areas such as national parks and other protected areas.

They have further called on Government to review its decision to allow the expansion of mining activities in the Lochinvar National Park in Zambia and other similarly located exploration and mining projects.

Among the stakeholders that signed the statement is Care for Nature Zambia, Caritas Zambia, Centre for Environmental Justice, Conservation Advocates Zambia, Healing Tree of Nations and TILYENJI KAUNDA who is an Activist.

Others are Mizu Eco Care, Namfumu Conservation Trust, Norwegian Church Aid and Dan Church Aid -Joint Country Programme-, Save Zambezi, Safe Zambezi, Southern Africa Resource Watch, Transparency International Zambia, World-Wide Fund for Nature Zambia and Zambian Governance Foundation.

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