PRESIDENT Ali Mohamed Shein yesterday said some leaders and executives in the government were to blame for endless land disputes and improper use of natural resources in Zanzibar.
Addressing executives, leaders and ministers at a meeting, Dr Shein expressed disappointment with some dishonest leaders, who continued violating laws and regulations for personal gains as far as natural resources (mainly forest, gravels and sand) land use were concerned.
"It is a pity that we still have land disputes and conflicts between people and investors, people and public projects and among citizens, along with environmental degradation, including reckless sand excavation, just because leaders expected to abide by the laws violate them," Dr Shein lamented.
He said Zanzibar had about nine laws linked to proper land use such as the Land Use Act of 1992 and Land Lease Act of 1994, which were not being enforced leading to endless conflicts.
"During my recent tour of the districts, I discovered that we still have land conflicts. This must end," Dr Shein emphasised.
Dr Shein said the government had decided to restrict sand digging because it had been over excavated and that proper procedures must be followed so that the remaining sand could be used for long.
"I urge you to be in the forefront in seeing that laws for protecting our land and the environment are enforced. Avoid getting involved in breaking the law because it is detrimental to our country.
As leaders we must show the way for citizens to follow," Dr Shein said.Minister for Lands Salama Aboud Talib said at the meeting held at Idrissa-Abdulwakil Multipurpose Hall in Kikwajuni, that the gathering, which involved almost all leaders in the government, was crucial because they needed to understand that some resources could soon be depleted if precautions were ignored.