Nkhotakota North East legislator Martha Lunji has underscored the need for collaboration in environmental conservation, saying climate change is a gender issue.
The legislator made the remarks on Monday at Maluma Village in Traditional Authority (T/A) Kanyenda during the district launch of this year’s forestry season.
President Peter Mutharika officially launched the season on December 18 last year in Mwanza District.
Lunji observed that women and girls are being subjected to various forms of abuses as they walk long distances to fetch firewood and water; hence, risking their lives to various abuses.
“Let’s take issues of climate change seriously. Women and girls are the worst victims of climate change as they shoulder household responsibilities. Some are raped as they walk early in the morning to search for water,” she said.
In her remarks, Department of Forestry’s Central Region zone manager Stella Gama said 19 million trees are expected to be planted nationwide in this season, with Nkhotakota planting three million.
“It is quite commendable that people are planting trees in their localities. However, we have noted that people are not following proper procedures of planting trees which is resulting in low survival rate,” she said.
Total Land Care (TLC) project manager Richard Mseka advised men to participate in environmental management issues.
He said more women are actively taking part in conserving the environment compared to their male counterparts.
This year’s theme is Restore Forests, Protect the Environment. n