TZ: gov’t halts demolition of Dar flood-prone area

Mkwajuni area in Kinondoni Municipal's Msimbazi Valley under demolition

Mkwajuni area in Kinondoni Municipal’s Msimbazi Valley under demolition

The Tanzanian government has temporarily suspended demolition program of over 8,000 buildings on the flood—prone area, Msimbazi valley to pave residents’ way to voluntarily vacate the area.

The demolition exercise which resumed mid this month has seen about 353 houses erased in Kinondoni Municipal.

Land, Housing and Human Settlements Minister, William Lukuvi said in Dar es Salaam, Tuesday that Msimbazi valley was a high-risk area and that government had allocated the area for construction of a public city parking.

He said construction of human settlement and other commercial structures is contrary to the rules of urban planning law of 2007 and environmental law No.4 of 2004.

Other areas where government has banned human settlement include open areas, riverbanks, beaches and sea sides, protected areas and road reserves.

Dares Salaam city has over 180 open spaces which have been illegally occupied; 111 sites located in Kinondoni District Council, 50 sites in Ilala and 19 sites in Temeke Council.

“It’s forbidden for people to set up and establish settlement in open space or along water sources and sea coastlines,” the minister said adding “we shall not humiliate persons but we shall equally not allow those who have invaded places not safe for human settlement.”

Lukuvi called on all residents in such areas to comply with the government order, insisting it is not a daylight dream.

According to the minister, the exercise will resume January 5, next year.

Meanwhile, the Minister in the Vice President’s Office in charge of union and environment, January Makamba said climate change and environment degradation were increasing at an alarming rate and it was the basis of government decision to revisit the situation.

“We are planning to issue the strategic land plan targeting protection of the environment. The environment problem has subsequently impacted on other sectors,” he said.

The minister said shortly after the exercise resumes, all buildings along Mbezi beach, Kawe and Mlala Kua valley that are illegally built will be demolished.