Main opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Thyolo Central Member of Parliament Ben Phiri has commended President Lazarus Chakwera for launching the National Clean-up Day on Wednesday, which will be observed on the second Friday of every month.
Phiri, who graced the launch at Chinsapo Ground in Likuni, Lilongwe said he hopes the clean-up campaign will jolt authorities into action to save the environment and hoped it will bring mindset change where all citizens will consistently avoid being polluters of the environment.
He joined legislators, diplomats and environmental management advocates who attended the launch ceremony of the campaign which urges Malawians to sweep and clean their homes, workplaces, other community surroundings every second Friday in a month.
In an interview, Phiri , who previously served as Minister of Local Government, said he was glad to have joined the initiative.
“We will have to carry the initiative through to our constituencies. You may want to appreciate as well that with Covid-19, Malawians are adhering to cleanliness.
“If we continue like this, we are not only going to avoid cholera, but will prevent all diseases related to hygiene,” said Phiri.
Parliamentary Committee for Natural Resources and Climate Change chairperson Welani Chilanga also commended the Clean-up campaign but stressed that industrial pollutions should be tacked.
Chilenga, a member of parliament who previously served as minister of Natural Resources and Environment, observed that Chakwera launched the campaign near many illegal structures such as secondary school a market and a graveyard.
During the launch, the President, First Lady Monica Chakwera and Vice-President Saulos Chilima were dressed in work gear including dust coats, helmet, gloves and gum boots. They also took part in clearing and shovelling waste into wheelbarrows and taking the same to a nearby waste skip.
In his address, Chakwera said he wants Malawi to be transformed into a much cleaner nation where pollution is not tolerated.
“Soon we will completely stop the use of plastic bags and migrate to environmentally friendly carrier bags so that we protect our environment and our lives,” he said
The President commended some cottage industries for turning waste into fuel briquettes and gas, stressing that his administration will assist such innovations that must trickle down to needy rural community members who should earn income from it.
Minister of Forestry and Natural Resources, Nancy Tembo said the launch of the initiative signifies a new beginning that will birth a healthy people and a prosperous nation.
“A clean environment means no sicknesses and that allows people to take part in developmental activities benefitting the nation and their individual lives,” she said.
Tembo said her ministry, the Ministry of Local Government and other line ministries commit to invest as much as they can to sustain the initiative, just like other countries like Uganda have been doing.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :