Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP), Livingstonia Synod General Secretary, Reverend William Tembo, has asked community leaders to take a leading role in protection of trees and the environment.
Speaking over the weekend at Eswazini CCAP church, Tembo said the respect that is accorded to local leaders makes it easy for subjects to take care of the trees if they are civic educated on the importance of the practice.
“Community leaders are much respected by people due to fear of punishment when they go against any by-laws. I therefore plead with Traditional Authority Kampingo Sibande to make sure that he instills in his subjects the discipline to conserve nature,” Tembo said.
Tembo further said every year more trees are cut down than planted leaving the country exposed to climate change which in turn affect livelihoods.
“Climate change affects us in so many ways. For instance, right now our friends in the Shire Valley are affected by floods and simultaneously this has brought in persistent power outages. This calls for all of us to collaborate in taking care of the environment. If we do this together we will overcome climate change,” he said adding “Every human being should take trees as their partner because of the role these trees play to our lives.”
According to Tembo the Synod is pleased to be among the few faith-based institutions to be selected by Malawi Scotland Partnership for the tree planting exercise.
Commenting on the matter Traditional Authority (TA) Kampingo Sibande said it is everyone’s responsibility to take care of the trees.
“May I ask the church and its members to take care of the trees we have planted today. I will also make sure that people in my community are doing the same. The trees we have planted here will help the church in many ways for example these trees will give them money in the next 10 – 15 years if they sell so I plead with them to take care of the trees seriously so that they help the church and the community,” Kampingo Sibande said.
Malawi Partnership Scotland Project Coordinator, Hendrix Nkhata, said they train young leaders to take a leading role in planting and taking care of the trees.
“We have a large number of youth across Malawi who are in this program around tree planting, advocacy, and replacing charcoal while others are into waste management. We are also working with government to stop thin plastic usage,” Nkhata said.
On the day, 1000 thousand tree seedlings were planted at Eswazini CCAP church. Malawi Scotland Partnership plans to plant about 12000 trees across the country.