By Wilson Allan Phiri
The Association of Environmental Journalists has kick started its 3 day annual general assembly in Lilongwe with a request to government to invest big in environmental restoration programs that would be sustained in the long run.
One of the stakeholders at the AGM, the Modern Cooking for Healthy Forests said the country is lagging behind in maintaining afforestation efforts.
The organization’s Chief of Party Ramsey Kanaan told Timveni on the need to enhance transparency and accountability in management of financial resources directed to environmental conservation.
Kanaan asked for concerted approach and commitment among various players to effectively restoring biodiversity.
In this regard, Kanaan said the Modern Cooking for Healthy Forests has made recommendation to government to only plant trees it is assured of looking after.
Ministry of Forestry and Natural Resources Deputy Director of Environmental Affairs Ben Yasini acknowledged that the country is failing to restore the environment despite huge investment.
Yasini stressed that government has incorporated ideas on environmental conservation in Malawi 2063 national agenda.
Meanwhile, Association of Environmental Journalists President Mathews Malata has challenged the media to preserve its watchdog role.
Government is set to plant 40 Million trees in the 2021/2022 national forestry season, which is below last seasons target of 60 Million trees.
During the 2020/2021 season the country managed to plant 56 million trees, a situation authorities pinned on impact of COVID.