FORESTS ACT

Arrangement of Sections

   Section

PART I
PRELIMINARY

   1.   Short title

   2.   Interpretation

   3.   Ownership of trees and forest produce

PART II
FORESTRY DEPARTMENT

   4.   Director of Forestry and other staff

   5.   Functions of Department

   6.   Honorary forest officers

   7.   Immunity

   8.   General principles of forest development and management

   9.   Criteria for determination of sustainable forest management

PART III
FOREST MANAGEMENT AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL FOREST

   10.   Establishment of National Forest

   11.   Acquisition of land for National Forest

   12.   Purpose of National Forest

   13.   Rights in National Forest

   14.   Control and management of National Forests

   15.   Grant of right or interest in National Forest

   16.   Restrictions in National Forest

LOCAL FOREST

   17.   Establishment of Local Forest

   18.   Acquisition of land for Local Forest

   19.   Purpose of Local Forest

   20.   Rights in Local Forest

   21.   Control and management of Local Forest

   22.   Grant of right or interest in Local Forest

   23.   Restrictions in Local Forest

BOTANICAL RESERVE

   24.   Establishment of botanical reserve

   25.   Prohibition of certain activities in botanical reserve

PRIVATE FORESTS

   26.   Registration of private forest

   27.   Entitlement of owner of registered private forest

   28.   De-registration of private forest

COMMUNITY FOREST MANAGEMENT

   29.   Community forest management group

   30.   Recognition of group

   31.   Community forestry agreements

   32.   Rights and obligations of local community under community forestry agreement

   33.   Assignment of rights under community forestry agreement

   34.   Termination of community forestry agreement

   35.   Register of community forestry agreements

JOINT FOREST MANAGEMENT

   36.   Declaration of joint forest management area

   37.   Joint forest management committee

   38.   Functions of joint forest management committee

   39.   Benefit sharing and financial provisions regarding joint forest management committees

PART IV
FOREST MANAGEMENT PLANS AND CONSERVATION ORDERS

   40.   Preparation of forest management plans

   41.   National and local inquiries

   42.   Consultation with holders of rights, title or interest in forest areas

   43.   Publication of forest management plan

   44.   Registration of forest management plan

   45.   Conservation orders

   46.   Apportioning costs due on conservation order

PART V
PROTECTED FLORA

   47.   Declaration of protected flora

   48.   Recovery plans for protected flora

PART VI
REGULATION OF FOREST PRODUCE

   49.   Purpose of conserving trees on State Land and customary areas

   50.   Control and management of major forest produce on State Land and Customary areas

   51.   Sale of forest produce

   52.   Licences

   53.   Permits

   54.   Integrated decision-making process and single licensing system

   55.   Terms and conditions of licences and permits

   56.   Limitations of licences and permits

   57.   Obligations of licensee and permit holder

   58.   Removal of forest produce from forest area

   59.   Variation of licence or permit

   60.   Surrender of licence or permit

   61.   Transfer of licence or permit

   62.   Suspension or cancellation of licence or permit

   63.   Renewal of licence or permit

   64.   Regulations on import and export of forest produce

   65.   Register of Licences and Permits

PART VII
MARKING OF TIMBER

   66.   Licence for manufacture and use of timber marking hammer or instrument

   67.   Prohibition of use of Department’s or other licensee’s timber marking hammer or instrument

   68.   Alteration and obliteration of marks on timber or tree stumps

   69.   Marking of timber for export

PART VIII
THE FOREST DEVELOPMENT FUND

   70.   Establishment of Fund

   71.   Administration and management of Fund

   72.   Auditing of Fund

   73.   Statement of income and expenditure

PART IX
ENFORCEMENT

   74.   Powers of authorised officer

   75.   Power to carry out tests and take statistics

   76.   Arrest without warrant

   77.   Obstruction of authorised officer

   78.   Demanding production of licence or permit

   79.   Prevention of offences

   80.   Search with warrant

   81.   Prosecution by officers

   82.   Seizure of property

   83.   Forfeiture and restoration of property

   84.   Assistance in extinguishing fire

PART X
OFFENCES AND PENALTIES

   85.   Offences by authorised officers

   86.   Prohibition of removal, felling, cutting, collecting, etc of major forest produce without licence or permit

   87.   Restrictions on manufacture of charcoal

   88.   Destruction of major forest produce

   89.   Illegal possession of forest produce

   90.   Import of forest produce

   91.   Export of forest produce

   92.   Mixing of marked forest produce with unmarked forest produce

   93.   Defacing of mark on forest produce

   94.   Removal, damage, etc of boundary mark

   95.   Illegal fixing of Departmental mark

   96.   Failure to assist with extinguishing fire in forest area, etc

   97.   Malicious damage to infrastructure in forest area

   98.   Unauthorised possession or use of uniform or identity of authorised officer

   99.   General penalty

   100.   Payment of fine without appearing in court

   101.   Additional powers of court

   102.   Civil remedy reserved

   103.   Evidence

   104.   Exhibits

PART XI
GENERAL PROVISIONS

   105.   Regulations

   106.   Repeal of Act No. 7 of 1999

   107.   Savings and transitional provisions

      SCHEDULE

AN ACT

to provide for the establishment and declaration of National Forests, Local Forests, joint forest management areas, botanical reserves, private forests and community forests; provide for the participation of local communities, local authorities, traditional institutions, non-governmental organisations and other stakeholders in sustainable forest management; provide for the conservation and use of forests and trees for the sustainable management of forests ecosystems and biological diversity; establish the Forest Development Fund; provide for the implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna, the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Water Fowl Habitat, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Convention to Combat Desertification in those Countries experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, particularly in Africa and any other relevant international agreement to which Zambia is a party; repeal and replace the Forests Act, 1999; and provide for matters connected with, or incidental to, the foregoing.

[14th August, 2015]

Act 4 of 2015.

PART I
PRELIMINARY

 

1.   Short title

This Act may be cited as the Forests Act.

 

2.   Interpretation

In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—

“authorised officer” means a forest officer, a law enforcement officer or an honorary forest officer;

“biological diversity” means the variability among living organisms from all sources, including terrestrial ecosystems, aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part, and diversity within species, among species, and of ecosystems;

“botanical reserve” means an area declared as such under section 24;

“Chief” means a person recognised as such under the Chiefs Act;

“citizen” means—

   (a)   an individual who is a citizen of Zambia; or

   (b)   an incorporated or unincorporated body of persons or a company which is composed exclusively of persons who are citizens of Zambia;

“community forest” means a forest controlled, used and managed under an agreement between a community forest management group and the Department;

“community forest management group” means a group of persons recognised by a Chief and local authority under section 29, which communally controls, uses and manages a forest in the area of the Chief and the local authority;

“community resource board” has the meaning assigned to it in the Zambia Wildlife Act, 1998;

“concession licence” means a concession licence issued under section 52;

“convert” means to carry out the process of converting wood into any kind of product, and “conversion” shall be construed accordingly;

“coupe” means any site or area for the cutting, felling or taking of forest produce, whether the boundaries of the area are demarcated on the ground or not;

“court” means a subordinate court or the High Court;

“customary area” has the meaning assigned to it in section 2 of the Lands Act;

“demarcated forest” means a National Forest, Local Forest, joint forest management area, community forest or private forest;

“Department” means the Forestry Department in the Ministry responsible for natural resources;

“Director” means the Director of Forestry appointed under section 4;

“domestic animal” includes a horse, donkey, mule, camel, cow, sheep, pig, goat and domestic fowl;

“ecosystem” means a living functional system which contains all organisms including human beings, their environment and the relationship that exists between them;

“firewood” means all woody parts of a tree which cannot be converted into timber or poles but can be cut into short lengths for use as wood fuel;

“flora” means all plants and parts of the plants in a particular area;

“forest” means any land with a tree canopy cover of more than 10 percent and area of more than 0.5 hectares and includes young stands that have not yet reached, but are expected to reach, a crown density of 10 percent and tree height of five metres that are temporarily under stocked areas;

“forest area” means a National Forest, Local Forest, botanical reserve, plantation, private forest, community forest, joint forest management area and open areas;

“forest management plan” means a management plan for a forest area prepared pursuant to section 40;

“forest officer” means a person appointed as such under section 4;

“forest produce” includes algae, bamboos, bark, bedding, bees, beeswax, boards, branch-wood, canes, carbon, charcoal, chips, climbers, cones, coppice, creepers, fibres, flowers, fruits, fuelwood, fungi, gills, grass, gums, hives, honey, lichens, litter, logs, moss, nursery plants, peat, planks, plant, poles, reeds, resin, roots, rubber, rushes, sand, sap, sawdust, scantlings, seeds, seedlings, slabs, soil, stumps, thatch, timber, thinnings, trees, vegetable-derived oils, vegetable-derived tar and wood spirits;

“forest resources” means vegetation, wood and non-wood products and forest ecological services, including the maintenance of soil quality, control of erosion, provision of organic materials and modulating climate;

“Fund” means the Forest Development Fund established under section 70;

“game management area” means an area of land declared as such under the Zambia Wildlife Act, 2015;

“honorary forest officer” means a person appointed as such under section 6;

“indigenous forest” means any forest which naturally grows or regenerates in a particular area;

“joint forest management” means the participation of stakeholders in the sustainable management of forest resources and the sharing of benefits derived from the management of the forest resources;

“joint forest management area” means an area declared as such under section 36;

“joint forest management committee” means a committee constituted under section 37;

“law enforcement officer” means a police officer, wildlife police officer, an officer of the Zambia Environmental Management Agency, the Anti-Corruption Commission or the Drug Enforcement Commission;

“licence” means a licence issued under this Act, and “licensee” shall be construed accordingly;

“local authority” means a city, municipal or district council established under the Local Government Act;

“local community” means the residents within or adjacent to a Local Forest, joint forest management area or open area who, by virtue of their rights over land, including customary land tenure, invest in and derive benefits from the sustainable utilisation of forest resources in their areas;

“Local Forest” means an area declared as a Local Forest under section 17;

“major forest produce” means a tree, part of a tree or derivative product such as timber, charcoal and carbon, other than leaves, flowers, fruits and seeds;

“minor forest produce” means non-wood forest produce which is part of a tree or found in the forest;

“National Forest” means an area declared as a National Forest under section 10;

“national monument” means an area declared as a national monument under the National Heritage and Conservation Commission Act;

“National Park” means an area declared as a National Park under the Zambia Wildlife Act, 2015;

“open area” means an area outside a Local Forest, National Forest, National Park, game management area and national monument;

“permit” means a permit issued under this Act;

“plantation” means a forest stand of introduced or indigenous species created by planting or seeding in the process of afforestation or reforestation;

“pole” means all sound and reasonably straight parts of a tree which are 1.2 metres or longer and which are not more than 30 centimetres or less than five centimetres in maximum diameter over bark, unless otherwise specified on any licence;

“precautionary principle” means the principle that lack of scientific certainty should not be used as a reason to postpone measures to prevent environmental degradation, or possible environmental degradation, where there is a threat of serious or irreversible environmental damage because of the threat;

“private forest” means any land or plantation registered as a private forest under section 26;

“protected flora” means any kind or category of flora declared to be protected under section 47;

“public road” has the meaning assigned to it in the Public Roads Act, 2002;

“rail reserve” means an area of land approved for the construction of a railway under the Railways Act;

“regulatory authority” means a person or body, except a professional body, which by law is empowered to regulate an activity under that law, and includes a Minister;

“repealed Act” means the Forests Act, 1999;

“Register” means the Register of Licences and Permits established under section 65;

“river” includes a lake, stream, canal and any other channel, whether natural or artificial;

“saw” includes a hand tool with a toothed blade or any power driven device with a rotating disk or moving band used for cutting wood;

“sawmill” means a factory where wood is processed mechanically into planks or boards using a saw;

“single-licensing system” has the meaning assigned to it in the Business Licensing Regulatory Act, 2014;

“stakeholder” means a person or group of persons with interest in the utilisation and management of forests;

“State Land” means all land in Zambia, other than customary areas, National Forests, Local Forests and land under leasehold tenure vested in any person;

“timber” means the part of any felled or fallen tree which has been cut off or can be cut off to provide wood whether sawn, split, hewn, sliced, veneered or otherwise fashioned, which is sound and reasonably straight, and which is 1.2 metres or longer and 30 centimetres or more in minimum diameter under bark;

“trees” includes bushes, climbers, coppice, palms, re-shoots, saplings, seedlings and shrubs of all ages and of all kinds and any part thereof;

“woodlot” means a forest of introduced or indigenous species, measuring up to 10 hectares, established by planting or seeding in the process of afforestation or reforestation; and

“Zambia Environmental Management Agency” means the Zambia Environmental Management Agency established under the Environmental Management Act, 2011.

 

3.   Ownership of trees and forest produce

The ownership of all trees standing on, and all forest produce derived from, customary areas, National Forests, Local Forests, State Land, botanical reserves and open areas is vested in the President, on behalf of the Republic, until lawfully transferred or assigned under this Act or any other written law.

PART II
FORESTRY DEPARTMENT

 

4.   Director of Forestry and other staff

   (1) The Public Service Commission shall appoint as public officers, the Director, Deputy-Director, forest officers and such other staff of the Department within the Ministry responsible for natural resources as shall be necessary for the proper administration of this Act.

   (2) The Director shall be responsible for the administration of this Act and the exercise of the Department’s functions as provided under this Act.

   (3) The Director may, in writing, delegate the exercise of any of the powers and functions conferred upon the Director by this Act to such authorised officers as the Director may think fit.

   (4) The Director may, in writing, revoke or vary the delegation of power made by the Director under sub-section (3).

   (5) The Minister may, by statutory order, confer any power and duties of an authorised officer under this Act on any public officer or class of public officers.

 

5.   Functions of Department

   (1) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the functions of the Department are to do all such things as are necessary for the rationalisation of the exploitation of forest resources and the promotion of sustainable forest management.

   (2) Without prejudice to the generality of sub-section (1), the functions of the Department are to—

   (a)   advise the Minister on areas required to be protected as National Forests, Local Forests, botanical reserves or community forests and the policies required to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of forest resources in those areas;

   (b)   control, manage, conserve and administer National Forests, Local Forests and botanical reserves;

   (c)   adopt and promote methods for the sustainability, conservation and preservation of ecosystems and biological diversity in forest areas and open areas;

   (d)   collect, compile and disseminate information on forest resources in any area and advise on areas requiring afforestation, re-forestation and protection of flora threatened or in danger of extinction;

   (e)   establish and promote the establishment of plantations;

   (f)   devise and implement participatory forest management approaches for indigenous forests and plantations involving local communities, traditional institutions, non-governmental organisations and other stakeholders, based on equitable gender participation;

   (g)   develop and implement public education programmes on various aspects of forestry, including indigenous knowledge on sustainable use and conservation of forest resources to ensure better appreciation, management and utilisation of forest resources;

   (h)   conduct and support forestry research and development and studies on national resource requirements and devise the best methods for meeting the demand of the multiple users of forest resources in an integrated manner compatible with sustainable use and conservation of biological diversity;

   (i)   undertake and support adaptive research and development of forest resource management, farm forestry, agro-forestry and forest products at national, regional and local levels;

   (j)   in partnership with local communities, joint forest management committees, community forest management groups, traditional institutions and the private sector, develop and implement management plans for forest areas and open areas;

   (k)   issue licences and permits and enter into concessions for purposes of this Act;

   (l)   devise methods for the sharing of costs and benefits from monies obtained from licences, permits and concessions with local communities and traditional institutions;

   (m)   develop mechanisms for monitoring the use of forest resources and developments in the forestry sector and for monitoring and evaluating forest resources;

   (n)   promote the sustainable utilisation of forest resources for the development of the national economy;

   (o)   establish and operate effective and systematic management of financial, human and natural resources for the conservation of biological diversity;

   (p)   take appropriate measures, in consultation with the Zambia Environmental Management Agency, to safeguard protected species against extinction and control and prevent the introduction of invasive alien species in forest areas;

   (q)   facilitate equitable access to forest resources for commercial, recreational and indigenous use;

   (r)   promote and regulate beekeeping;

   (s)   cooperate and consult with other public institutions whose powers and functions impact on this Act;

   (t)   liaise or interface with similar organs in other countries or international institutions dealing with forestry conservation and management; and

   (u)   perform any other functions as are necessary or incidental to the carrying out of its functions under this Act.

   (3) The Minister may give to the Director such general or special directions, which are consistent with the provisions of this Act, as the Minister may consider necessary for purposes of this Act and the Director shall give effect to the directions.

   (4) The Director shall, in carrying out the functions of the Department—

   (a)   promote a community based natural resource management approach in respect of forest management;

   (b)   facilitate and simplify the licensing system under this Act and collaborate with other regulatory authorities in the administration of the single licensing system;

   (c)   encourage cooperation and partnerships with communities and civil society organisations in the implementation of this Act;

   (d)   ensure the uniform application of this Act;

   (e)   ensure the efficient and effective operation of the Department; and

   (f)   conduct any other activity specified under this Act or that is necessary for the implementation of this Act.

 

6.   Honorary forest officers

   (1) The Minister may, in consultation with the Director, by notice in the Gazette, appoint any person to be an honorary forest officer on such terms and conditions as the Minister may specify in the notice.

   (2) The appointment of an honorary forest officer may be—

   (a)   general, so that the honorary forest officer is empowered to act in any part of the Republic or in a National Forest, Local Forest or other area specified in the notice of appointment; or

   (b)   limited, so that the honorary forest officer is empowered to act in areas of their residence, including any forest, as may be specified in the instrument of appointment.

   (3) Subject to the provisions of this Act and the terms of the instrument of appointment, an honorary forest officer shall, within the terms of appointment, exercise the functions and perform the duties of an authorised officer.

 

7.   Immunity

An action shall not lie against a forest officer or an honorary forest officer in respect of any act done by the forest officer or honorary forest officer in good faith and without negligence in the execution of the powers vested in them under this Act.

 

8.   General principles of forest development and management

The Minister, Director or persons to whom the Minister or Director has delegated any powers and functions under this Act, shall, in implementing this Act, have regard to—

   (a)   the principle that forests and trees shall be managed as an asset for succeeding generations;

   (b)   the need to apply the precautionary principle to the development, management, utilisation and conservation of forest ecosystems, biological diversity and habitats, taking into account the best scientific evidence available;

   (c)   the development, management, utilisation and conservation of forests and trees to achieve a sound ecological balance;

   (d)   the need to achieve optimum utilisation and ecologically sustainable development and management of forest ecosystems, biological diversity and habitats;

   (e)   the need to conserve forests and trees as living resources for both present and future generations and to achieve economic growth, human resource development and employment creation;

   (f)   the need to protect biological diversity in forest areas and protect the ecosystem as a whole, including species which are not targeted for exploitation;

   (g)   the need to sustain the potential yield of economic, social and environmental benefits derived from forests;

   (h)   the need to promote the fair distribution of the economic, social health and environmental benefits derived from forests;

   (i)   the need to minimise pollution of natural resources, especially forests, land and waters;

   (j)   the need to develop and manage forests so as to conserve heritage resources and promote aesthetic and cultural values;

   (k)   the need to achieve to the extent practicable a broad and accountable participation in the decision-making processes provided for in this Act; and

   (l)   the implementation of international agreements to which Zambia is party.

 

9.   Criteria for determination of sustainable forest management

   (1) The Minister may, by statutory instrument, make regulations—

   (a)   prescribing criteria for the sustainability of forests;

   (b)   prescribing indicators which may be used to measure the state of forest management and appropriate standards in relation to the indicators;

   (c)   creating or promoting certification programmes and other incentives to encourage sustainable forest management; and

   (d)   for the sustainable management of beekeeping.

   (2) The Minister shall, in prescribing criteria, indicators and standards under sub-section (1), take into account economic, social and environmental conditions.

   (3) Criteria and indicators prescribed under sub-section (1) may include those for determining—

   (a)   the level of development and maintenance of—

      (i)   forest resources;

      (ii)   biological diversity in forests;

      (iii)   the health and vitality of forests;

      (iv)   the productive functions of forests;

      (v)   the protective and environmental functions of forests; and

      (vi)   the social functions of forests;

   (b)   the level of provision of socio-economic benefits by forests; and

   (c)   the status and appropriateness of the policy, legislative and institutional framework for forest development management.

   (4) The criteria, indicators and standards determined under sub-section (1) may—

   (a)   apply to specific forests;

   (b)   apply to all or specific forest types; and

   (c)   identify the boundaries of forests to which they apply.

PART III
FOREST MANAGEMENT AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL FOREST

 

10.   Establishment of National Forest

   (1) Subject to sub-section (2), the President may, by statutory instrument, declare any area of land within the Republic to be a National Forest and may, in like manner, declare that any National Forest shall cease to be a National Forest or that the boundaries of any National Forest shall be altered or extended.

   (2) Notwithstanding the provisions of this Act, an area declared a National Forest under the repealed Act shall continue to exist as if declared under this Act.

 

11.   Acquisition of land for National Forest

The President may, on the recommendation of the Minister, compulsorily acquire under the Lands Acquisition Act any land for the purposes of a National Forest as may be necessary or desirable in the public interest.

 

12.   Purpose of National Forest

Subject to the other provisions of this Act, all land comprised in a National Forest shall be used for—

   (a)   the security of forest resources of national importance;

   (b)   the conservation of ecosystems and biological diversity;

   (c)   improved forest resource management and sustainable utilisation of forest resources; and

   (d)   the management of major water catchments and head waters, subject to the Water Resources Management Act, 2011.

 

13.   Rights in National Forest

   (1) The President may, if satisfied that any right, easement or profit may reasonably be claimed over an area declared or recommended to be declared a National Forest under section 10, direct the Minister to inquire into and determine the existence, nature and extent of the right, easement or profit.

   (2) The Minister may, after proper inquiry, either admit in whole or in part, or reject any claim referred to in sub-section (1) as seems just in the circumstances.

   (3) For the purposes of this section, the practice of shifting cultivation, including fallow stage or previous settlement, shall not be deemed to be a right for purposes of this section.

   (4) Subject to sub-section (5), where it appears to the Minister that it is expedient or desirable to commute, in whole or in part, any right, easement or profit admitted under sub-section (2), the Minister shall assess the amount of money payable to the holder of the right, easement or profit.

   (5) Notwithstanding sub-section (4), no amount shall be payable on account of any restriction or prohibition imposed in the interest of forest management or in the exercise or enjoyment of any right, easement or profit relating to the collection of forest produce, hunting, fishing, setting any trap, obstructing any river, pasturing any domestic animal or lighting any fire.

   (6) Where any right, easement or profit over an area is admitted under sub-section (2) and the Minister considers that the area could be excised in whole or in part from the National Forest or an area recommended to be declared a National Forest without materially affecting the proposed management of the National Forest, the President may alter the boundaries of the National Forest or an area recommended to be declared a National Forest so as to exclude from it such area or part of such area.

   (7) Any right, easement or profit admitted under sub-section (2) which is not commuted under sub-section (4) shall, unless the area on or in relation to which that right, easement or profit has been admitted as being excluded from the National Forest under sub-section (6), be specified in a statutory instrument, and except for the right, easement or profit, shall be recognised on or in relation to any land comprised in the National Forest.

   (8) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this Act, the Director shall not prohibit or restrict the exercise or enjoyment of any right, easement or profit specified in a statutory instrument made under sub-section (7).

 

14.   Control and management of National Forests

Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the Director shall be responsible for the control and management of National Forests.

 

15.   Grant of right or interest in National Forest

   (1) Nothing in this Act shall be construed as preventing or restricting the granting, under any other written law for any purposes consistent with the provisions of this Act, of any right or interest in, or in relation to, an area of land comprised in a National Forest, subject to any conditions which the Minister may determine, in consultation with the Director and the relevant regulatory authority under that written law.

   (2) The conditions imposed by the Director under sub-section (1) shall take into account the provisions of the Environmental Management Act, 2011.

   (3) In this section, “right” includes a mining right granted under the Mines and Minerals Development Act, 2015.

 

16.   Restrictions in National Forest

   (1) Subject to sub-section (2), a person shall not enter any National Forest without a licence or permit.

   (2) Sub-section (1) does not apply to a person who is a traveller on a public road in, or footpath frequently used by residents within or adjacent to a National Forest.

   (3) A person who contravenes sub-section (1) commits an offence and is liable, upon conviction, to a fine not exceeding two hundred thousand penalty units or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years, or to both.

LOCAL FOREST

 

17.   Establishment of Local Forest

   (1) Subject to sub-section (2), the President may, by statutory instrument, declare any area of land within the Republic to be a Local Forest and may, in like manner, declare that any Local Forest or part of the Local Forest shall cease to be a Local Forest or that the boundaries of the Local Forest shall be altered or extended.

   (2) Notwithstanding the provisions of this Act, an area declared a Local Forest under the repealed Act shall continue to exist as if declared under this Act.

 

18.   Acquisition of land for Local Forest

The President may compulsorily acquire under the Lands Acquisition Act any land for the purposes of a Local Forest as may be considered necessary or desirable in the public interest.

 

19.   Purpose of Local Forest

Subject to the other provisions of this Act and any other written law, all land comprised in a Local Forest shall be used for the conservation and development of forests for—

   (a)   the security of forest resources;

   (b)   the protection of ecosystems, particularly the protection of land and water supplies of local strategic importance;

   (c)   the utilisation of forest resources at the local level; and

   (d)   meeting the social, cultural and economic needs of the local community.

 

20.   Rights in Local Forest

Section 13 shall apply to a Local Forest.

 

21.   Control and management of Local Forest

   (1) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the Director shall be responsible for the control and management of a Local Forest, except that the Minister may, by statutory instrument, after consultation with a local community in the area, assign the control and management of a Local Forest to a local community or joint forest management committee on such terms and conditions as the Minister may determine.

   (2) Notwithstanding sub-section (1), a local authority may apply to the Minister, in the prescribed manner and form, to control and manage a Local Forest which lies within the jurisdiction of the local authority.

 

22.   Grant of right or interest in Local Forest

Section 15 shall apply to a Local Forest.

 

23.   Restrictions in Local Forest

   (1) A person shall not do any of the following acts in a Local Forest without a licence or permit—

   (a)   fell, cut, fashion, burn, injure, take, collect or remove any forest product;

   (b)   squat, camp, reside, build or excavate, construct or use any enclosure, re-open or use any road other than a public road, or erect or operate any plant, machinery or equipment;

   (c)   set fire to any tree, undergrowth, grass or forest produce, assist in lighting any fire, or allow any fire to be lit by any person or allow the employee or agent of any person to enter a Local Forest;

   (d)   graze domestic animals or allow domestic animals to trespass;

   (e)   clear, cultivate or break-up land for cultivation or other purposes, or grow crops;

   (f)   enter or be found in or upon any Local Forest or for any purpose contrary to an order made by the Director, unless the person is a traveller on a public road;

   (g)   collect any bees, comb-honey or beeswax, or hang or place on any tree or elsewhere any beehive or other receptacle for the purpose of obtaining any bees, comb-honey or beeswax, or be found in, or upon, any Local Forest for the purpose of collecting any bees, comb-honey or beeswax;

   (h)   remove or damage any boundary mark, beacon, notice, fence or gate, or remove or damage any mark placed on any tree by, or on, the authority of a forest officer; or

   (i)   deposit or negligently allow the disposal of any refuse or debris in, or on, any Local Forest.

   (2) A person who contravenes sub-section (1) commits an offence and is liable, upon conviction, to a fine not exceeding two hundred thousand penalty units or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years, or to both.

   (3) Notwithstanding sub-section (1), the Minister may, by statutory instrument, permit any acts described in that sub-section in a Local Forest that do not adversely affect sustainable forest management and conservation.

BOTANICAL RESERVE

 

24.   Establishment of botanical reserve

   (1) The President may, in consultation with the Ministers responsible for the environment and urban and regional planning, by statutory instrument, declare any forest area or woodland or any part thereof, which has an environmental, ecological, cultural, scientific or national significance, to be a botanical reserve for the purpose of preserving, conserving and restoring its biodiversity and natural amenities and may, in like manner declare that any botanical reserve shall cease to be a botanical reserve or that the boundaries of any botanical reserve shall be altered or extended.

   (2) Where a botanical reserve lies within a private forest, the Director shall, in consultation with the Minister, make such arrangements for the payment to the owner of the private forest of such compensation as may be determined by a government valuation surveyor.

   (3) A person who, or local community which, intends to use a botanical reserve for cultural, religious, educational or scientific purposes shall apply to the Director in the prescribed manner and form.

   (4) The Director shall approve an application made under sub-section (3) if it does not have adverse effects on the sustainability of ecosystems and biological diversity in the botanical reserve concerned.

   (5) The Minister may, by statutory instrument, prescribe guidelines for the use, conservation, preservation and management of botanical reserves.

 

25.   Prohibition of certain activities in botanical reserve

   (1) A person shall not, in a botanical reserve and without the prior approval of the Director—

   (a)   fell, cut or damage any tree or re-generation of the tree or biodiversity in the botanical reserve;

   (b)   squat, camp, reside, build or excavate, construct or use any enclosure, re-open or use any road other than a public road, or erect or operate any plant, machinery or equipment;

   (c)   set fire to any tree, undergrowth, grass or forest produce, assist in lighting any fire or allow any fire to be lit by any person or allow any person to enter the botanical reserve;

   (d)   graze domestic animals or allow domestic animals to trespass;

   (e)   clear, cultivate or break up land for cultivation or other purposes, or grow crops;

   (f)   enter or be found in or upon the botanical reserve or for any purpose contrary to an order made by the Director, unless the person is a traveller on a public road;

   (g)   collect any bees, honey, comb, or beeswax, or hang or place on any tree or elsewhere any beehive or other receptacle for the purpose of obtaining any bees, comb, honey or beeswax, or be found in, or upon, the botanical reserve for the purpose of collecting any bees, honey, comb, or beeswax;

   (h)   remove or damage any boundary mark, beacon, notice, fence or gate, or remove or damage any mark placed on any tree by, or on, the authority of a forest officer; or

   (i)   deposit or negligently allow the disposal of any refuse or debris in, or on, the botanical reserve.

   (2) A person who contravenes sub-section (1) commits an offence and is liable, upon conviction, to a fine not exceeding two hundred thousand penalty units or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years, or to both.

PRIVATE FORESTS

 

26.   Registration of private forest

   (1) An owner or lessee of any land or plantation who wishes to establish a private forest shall apply to the Director, in the prescribed manner and form, for the registration of the area which the person intends to comprise the private forest.

   (2) The Director shall, in determining whether to approve an application under sub-section (1), have regard to—

   (a)   the uses to which the applicant is proposing to put the land, the manner in which it will be done and the compatibility of the uses with sustainable forest management;

   (b)   the resources available to the applicant and likely to be applied to the land;

   (c)   the current use and management of the land;

   (d)   the environmental impact assessment undertaken in respect of the land; or

   (e)   any comments or representations from the local community in the area who are likely to be affected by the registration of the area as a private forest.

   (3) The Director may, within 30 days of receipt of an application under sub-section (1), if the applicant meets the prescribed criteria, register the private forest on such terms and conditions as the Director may determine.

   (4) The terms and conditions referred to in sub-section (3) may include—

   (a)   arrangements for and methods of felling trees, including the rates of extraction of timber on the land;

   (b)   in consultation with the relevant regulatory authority, construction of roads, bridges, buildings and other structures on the land;

   (c)   arrangements for and methods of transporting timber within and out of the land;

   (d)   gathering and utilisation of forest products from the land;

   (e)   afforestation and re-forestation of the land;

   (f)   in consultation with the Zambia Environmental Management Agency, disposal of waste;

   (g)   prevention of pollution;

   (h)   conservation of flora and fauna on the land;

   (i)   consultation with persons living near the land and deriving some or all of their livelihood from the land;

   (j)   cooperation with right holders in respect of existing rights;

   (k)   the duration of the registration and the terms of its renewal;

   (l)   the payment of rent, fees or royalties in respect of the land;

   (m)   rendering of reports to the Department, local authority or local community in the area;

   (n)   the settling of any disputes in respect of the land; and

   (o)   such other matters as may be prescribed.

   (5) The Minister may prescribe the—

   (a)   criterion for registration of private forests;

   (b)   procedure for applying for registration, renewal, transfer and cancellation of registration; and

   (c)   terms and conditions of registration, renewal, transfer or cancellation of registration.

 

27.   Entitlement of owner of registered private forest

   (1) An owner of a private forest registered under section 26 shall be entitled to receive from the Department—

   (a)   technical advice on forest management and conservation; and

   (b)   subject to availability of funds, loans from the Fund for the development and management of the private forest.

   (2) An owner of a private forest may apply to the relevant authorities for exemption from payment of all or part of the rates and other charges that may be levied in respect of the land on which the private forest is established.

   (3) An owner of a private forest may sell, fell, cut or remove forest produce from the private forest without a licence or permit.

 

28.   De-registration of private forest

   (1) The Director may de-register a private forest if the owner of the private forest—

   (a)   requests for the de-registration in the prescribed manner and form;

   (b)   contravenes the provisions of this Act or fails to comply with the terms and conditions of registration;

   (c)   ceases to own the land on which it is located; or

   (d)   obtained the registration by fraud or deliberate or negligent submission of false information or statements.

   (2) The Director shall, before de-registering a private forest in accordance with sub-section (1), give written notice to the owner of the private forest of the intention to de-register the private forest and shall give the reasons for the intended de-registration and require the owner of the private forest to show cause, within a period of not more than 30 days, why the private forest should not be de-registered.

   (3) The Director shall not de-register a private forest under this section if the owner takes remedial measures to the satisfaction of the Director within the period of 30 days referred to in sub-section (2).

   (4) The Director shall de-register a private forest if the owner of the private forest who is notified under sub-section (2) fails to show cause or does not take any remedial measures to the satisfaction of the Director within the period specified in that sub-section.

   (5) The owner of a private forest shall, where a private forest is de-registered, cease to be entitled to the rights and benefits conferred under this Act with effect from the date of the de-registration.

COMMUNITY FOREST MANAGEMENT

 

29.   Community forest management group

   (1) A community forest management group may be formed by a group of persons who are—

   (a)   members of a village in or near a forest;

   (b)   managing a forest or part of a forest; or

   (c)   desirous of managing a forest or part of a forest.

   (2) A community forest management group shall be formed for the purpose of communal control, use and management of a forest.

   (3) A community forest management group shall be guided by the following principles—

   (a)   persons living in close proximity to or deriving their livelihood from or having strong traditional ties to the forest shall be given an opportunity to join a community forest management group;

   (b)   the purposes for which the community forest management group is formed shall be implemented to promote sustainable management of forest ecosystems and biological diversity;

   (c)   the purposes for which the community forest management group is formed shall be explained to all persons wishing to join the community forest management group;

   (d)   the management of the community forest management group, the management of any funds and the selection of the leaders of the community forest management group shall be based on transparency, fairness, impartiality and non-discrimination;

   (e)   members of a community forest management group shall be encouraged to participate in the management of the community forest management group; and

   (f)   the procedures for membership of the community forest management group or guidelines regulating the conduct of members of the community forest management group shall be based on, and conducted in accordance with, the principles of natural justice.

   (4) The Director may provide assistance to persons living in the vicinity of, or deriving their livelihood from, a forest to form a community forest management group to manage a forest.

 

30.   Recognition of group

   (1) A group of persons living in the vicinity of a forest may apply to the Director for recognition as a community forest management group with the consent of the Chief of the area in which the forest is located.

   (2) The Director may, within 21 days of receipt of an application under sub-section (1), recognise a group of persons as a community forest management group if the group of persons—

   (a)   is recognised within the community which is within or adjacent to a local forest; and

   (b)   derives their livelihood from the forest.

   (3) The Director shall, in determining whether to accord recognition to a group of persons under this section, take into account the principles set out in section 29.

   (4) The Director shall, where the Director refuses to recognise a group of persons as a community forest management group under this section, notify the group of persons, in writing, within 14 days from the date of such refusal and give the reasons therefor.

   (5) A group of persons which is aggrieved by the decision of the Director may, within 30 days from the date of receipt of the decision of the Director, appeal to the Minister.

   (6) A group of persons which is aggrieved by the decision of the Minister may, within 30 days from the date of receipt of the decision, appeal to the High Court.

 

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