The Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP) in the Livingstonia Synod has blamed government on the continued plunder of the country’s forests, arguing authorities concerned have failed to put in place “clear strategies.”
The Synod’s general secretary, Levi Nyondo, said last Saturday during the inauguration of a tree planting campaign the church undertakes every year that it “is useless for the government to deploy officers in the country’s roadblocks thinking it can arrest the problem of deforestation.”
Instead, Nyondo suggested government must deploy “more personnel” and “pump in more resources” on the attacked forest reserves to flash out encroachers and those that aimlessly cut down trees.
“We’ve left the forests at the mercy of charcoal burners who have completely ruined our Viphya Plantation and other reserves,” said Nyondo.
The Viphya Plantation, which sits on a 53 000 hectare piece of land, was once Africa’s largest man-made forest, but has been reduced to nothing by mostly illegal timber trade.
Nyondo advised government to think of bringing other sources of energy such as solar energy and making sure that ESCOM is affordable so that people do not heavily depend on charcoal and wood.
While Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Minister, Bright Msaka, could not be reached for comment, government spokesperson, Nicholas Dausi, refused to comment on the sentiments.
He said he could not contest whatever was raised.
“The church is our advisor, so contesting against what it advises means creating a war,” said Dausi.
On his part, the synod’s Moderator John Gondwe thanked Act Alliance Malawi for supporting them with finances and 5,000 seedlings saying the project is good for the nation.
The Project, “Trees for Life, Lets Plant New Ones to Save a Life,” is being implemented with the financial support from a Church consortium called Act Alliance Malawi.
The Synod intends to plant 60 million trees in three years to build a better, free of disaster Malawi, according to Nyondo.
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