Leonard Ncube in Victoria Falls
THE country’s prime tourism destination, Victoria Falls, has potential to become the world’s cleanest urban centre.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Mr Munesu Munodawafa said this during a National Clean-Up exercise in the resort town last Friday.
President Mnangagwa has declared every first Friday of each month as a National Clean-Up Day.
He said Victoria Falls, which is one of the best wonders of world, was the cleanest town in Zimbabwe and competes with the globe’s best cities.
“Victoria Falls is the cleanest town in the country. As a Ministry we have learnt that some companies and institutions have adopted certain areas here and that’s a good start because we want Victoria Falls to be declared the cleanest town in the world.
“This is possible especially if we all embrace the national clean-up call started by President Mnangagwa,” said Mr Munodawafa.
In Victoria, the clean-up exercise was conducted by players in the tourism sector, TM Supermarket, Masimba Construction, Victoria Falls Municipality, Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, Zimbabwe Republic Police and schoolchildren from a local college in the resort town.
Mr Munodawafa said tourism thrives on clean environments and thus it was imperative to ensure resort centres were kept clean in order to attract tourists.
“Tourism thrives on a clean environment hence we need to maintain our resorts litter free. Other towns should pull a leaf from Victoria Falls where institutions should adopt certain areas for a clean environment.
“I want to urge Zimbabweans from all walks of life to participate in national events that promote our tourism and not to litter everywhere,” he added.
Recently, one of the world’s leading geographic magazines, The National Geographic Traveller, named Zimbabwe among the 19 must-see tourism destinations in the world ranking putting the country on 9th position.
In addition, a United Kingdom-based daily newspaper, Yorkshire Evening Post, listed Victoria Falls as one of the world’s top must-visit holiday destinations in 2019.
The publication said Victoria Falls is a great holiday destination for those that seek lazing in the sun and individuals that are thrill-seekers.
Mr Munodawafa challenged the private sector and local authorities to work together towards promoting litter-free environments.
Zimbabwe’s tourism sector is recovering from negative perception which in recent years had dogged the country negatively impacting on tourist arrival statistics.
Under the leadership of President Mnangagwa, the Government has embarked on an international engagement exercise with the international community with the aim of mending relations with the foreign community, which move has a positive impact on tourist arrivals into the country.
According to the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, in the nine months to September 2018, tourist arrivals have surged by four percent to 1,8 million compared to 1,7 million in the corresponding period in 2017.