Dzalanyama Forest Reserve on sale, claims MCP MP

Malawi’s opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) parliamentarian for Lilongwe Msonzi south Vitus Dzoole Mwale has alleged that the People’s Party (PP) government is planning to sell Dzalanyama Forest Reserve, a major catchment area for the country’s Capital City for its water supply.

“I have heard rumours that the People’s Party (PP) is planning to sell Dzalanyama. This is a very big concern since this is a major conservation and catchment area which supplies water to the resident of the city of Lilongwe. This threatens the survival of the people,” he said.

Dzoole Mwale was speaking during the debate on the 2013/2014 budget.

In his contribution the MP also spoke pationately on the lack of proper management on the environment in the country which he said has led to depletion of important protected forest reserves across the country.

Dzoole Mwale: Dzalanyama is being sold
Dzoole Mwale: Dzalanyama is being sold

He said among the forest reserves under threat include Dzalanyama itself, Chikangawa, Zomba and Mulanje.

“For future generations to survive we need to manage the environment as a constitutional obligation. I am worried that in 50 years time we are all going to perish if we are not careful,” said Dzoole Mwale.

In her response to the concerns the country’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change Management Jennifer Chilunga standing on a point of order said it was not true that Dzalanyama is on sale saying government regards the reserve as a crucial conservation area and an important ecosystem for Lilongwe.

She also said that government was properly managing the environment saying since it set up a Forest Development Fund last year almost 3,200 hectares of trees have been planted across the country.

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