19 April 2019
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Monday, 25 February 2019 06:06

Bishop Musikuwa decries deforestation

Written by  Steve Chirombo
Bishop Musikuwa assisted by Nkawihe planting a tree at Chagambatuka school in Chikwawa Bishop Musikuwa assisted by Nkawihe planting a tree at Chagambatuka school in Chikwawa pic by Steve Chirombo

Chikwawa, February 25,2019: The head of the Catholic Church in Chikwawa, Episcope Bishop Peter Musikuwa said rampant cutting down of trees and lack of care of already planted trees have led to deforestation in the district.

Bishop Musikuwa made the remarks on Friday when he led a tree planting exercise organized by Catholic Development Commission in Malawi (CADECOM) which took place at Chagambatuka Primary School in the area of Senior Chief Makhwira.

He said forest depletion in the district has hit the district hard and was contributing negatively to people’s lives.

“Human activities such as sale of trees, timber production and charcoal burning have negatively contributed to the survival rate of trees in the district. Most of our hills and areas in the district are bare with no trees on them.

“We need to care for the trees because the more we destroy them, the more negative impacts on our environment and our lives,” said Musikuwa.

He cited fast population growth in the district as one of the factors affecting tree survival as more people had nothing to do thereby resorting to charcoal burning business.

He then urged communities to plant more trees in river banks to help reduce soil erosion that has greatly affected the silted Shire River.

“CADECOM shall continue in its tree planting exercises. As of now, the organization plans to plant about 63,000 trees with 25,000 to be planted in the area of TA Makhuwira, 10,000 at TA Maseya, Ndakwera area benefiting 18,000 and Senior Chief Chapananga shall have a blessing of 10,000 trees,” said Bishop Musikuwa.

On his part, Chikwawa District Forestry Officer, Hector Nkawihe commended CADECOM for the good gesture and asked other organizations implementing various activities to emulate the same.

Nkawihe said overdependence on forests as well as overpopulation affect tree growth adding that it was necessary to extend the tree planting knowledge to children for sustainability of natural resources in the country.

“Most of the natural hazards we are currently facing as a district are as a result of climate change due to careless cutting down of trees. I would like to ask for the formulation of by-laws that will help trees planted grow as well as ensuring natural regeneration.

“My office is ready to directly work with you all in order to ensure trees are maintained,” said Nkawihe.

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