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Saturday, 23 August 2014 09:57

Police, courts commended for fighting charcoal burning

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Dowa August 22: The District forestry office in Dowa has commended the strong working relationships with the Police and Court in ensuring that perpetrators of illegal charcoal burning and wanton cutting down of trees in Dowa and Kongwe hills are brought to book.

The District Forestry Technical Assistant, Bakaya Yohane Mtsitsi said this at a Court Users Committee meeting held at the Boma on Thursday.

Mtsitsi said the prosecution by the court of some people for the mal-practice has significantly reduced perpetrators in the district mainly at the Dowa and Kongwe reserves.

“Recently two people were convicted and charged, this sent strong warning to the would –be offenders in charcoal burning,” said Mtsitsi.

However, Mtsitsi expressed concern over government’s low funding to the forestry department despite offering more revenue to it.

The forestry official said he is optimistic that government will give back the revenue to the district forest office to sustain the environment of Dowa and Kongwe reserves.

A snap survey conducted in Dowa has shown that more of illegal charcoal burning is happening with the flow of huge supplies to the main urban centres of Lilongwe.

The meeting was organized with funds from the Centre for Legal Assistance (CELA), a human rights body dealing in legal affairs.

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