Zim Institute of Foundries calls for regulation of scrap metal industry

25 Feb, 2024 - 00:02 0 Views
Zim Institute of Foundries calls for regulation of scrap metal industry Mr Dosman Mangisi

The Sunday News

Judith Phiri, Business Reporter 

THE Zimbabwe Institute of Foundries (ZIF) has issued a call for the regulation of the scrap metal industry amid escalating incidents of theft and infrastructure vandalism across the country. 

The urgent plea comes in response to the persistent challenges posed by rampant theft and vandalism, highlighting the critical need for regulatory measures to safeguard against further damage to vital infrastructure and assets.

This comes at a time when illegal scrap metal exports are said to be bleeding the economy of potential foreign currency earnings amid indications that an estimated US$5 billion worth of scrap material has been traded to neighbouring countries in the last 20 years. In an interview, ZIF chief operations officer (COO), Mr Dosman Mangisi said they were worried about the vandalism that was being done to the infrastructure by scrap metal collectors. 

“It is very bad behaviour that we are witnessing in the country of vandalism of infrastructure in the quest to get scrap metal. It is crippling the economy and affecting societies where these vandalisms are taking place. We are very much worried as ZIF and this has necessitated us to draft scrap metal regulations which we will soon table to the Government and various stakeholders for them to be actioned.” 

He said there was need for collaboration between stakeholders, law enforcement agents such as the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) and the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) to work together and curb scrap metal related vandalism cases. 

Mr Mangisi said it should be made mandatory for people to be licensed both as scrap metal sellers and buyers to curb the loopholes in the sector. A foundry player in Kelvin areas of Bulawayo, Mr Prince Gobvu said there was need for strict enforcement of laws that prosecute those that buy uncleared scrap metal. 

“The vandalism of infrastructure we are witnessing in the country is very bad, for you to sell scrap metal in our area in Kelvin North, Bulawayo you are now required to pass through Western Commonage Police station and get a police clearance. You drive your truck into the police station and get clearance, if a foundry or scrap merchant is found to be buying uncleared scrap metal, they are now liable to prosecution and I think this must be enforced throughout the whole country,” he said. 

In a previous interview, Hwange Local Board (HLB) Town Secretary Mr Ndumiso Mdlalose bemoaned the rampant theft of cast iron manhole covers for exacerbating sewer blockages and burst in its area of jurisdiction.

Mr Ndumiso Mdlalose

“As Council, we are very much concerned about the rise in cases of cast iron manhole covers theft. The theft of covers increases the rate of sewer blockages, as large volumes of foreign objects easily find their way into manholes,” he said.

Mr Mdlalose said theft of cast iron covers leaves communities susceptible to various forms of hazards.

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