President Peter Mutharika says Malawi will suffer if people continue to neglect the environment, a contradiction to plans set by his administration to extract oil on Lake Malawi which experts say will result in the extinction of fish which is the primary source of proteins for the country.
Mutharika, who presided over the 2016 National Forestry Season launch in Ntcheu today, said practices that are a risk to the environment should be treated as a crime against humanity and the people degrading the environment prosecuted for trying to ‘wipe’ the people of Malawi.
“People who go on rampage, destroying our natural resources are trying to wipe us all out of existence. Such people must face the law and be treated with no mercy” directed Mutharika whose government gave a green light to multinationals to explore oil in readiness of extraction.
He added: “Natural resources are what support our existence on earth. We cannot take our natural resources for granted. We cannot take our existence for granted. For this reason, we have no other choice but to conserve our natural resources. Either we do that, or we perish from the face of this earth. Our fate is that we shall all suffer if we neglect our natural resources. Let us join hands to safeguard the environment”.
“God gave us our natural resources to use them and look after them. Yet, everyone has gone on the rampage of our self-destruction by degrading the environment. And there are only few who care, and listen to the sad cry of nature all around us!” lamented the Malawi leader.
Environmental experts have issued a stern warning, saying plans to extract oil on Lake Malawi will annihilate the world’s 5th largest body of fresh water and make its water a danger for human use.
The experts who include local activist, Godfrey Mfiti, say spillage from oil extraction will kill fish, the primary source of proteins in Malawi. This, the experts warn, threaten the existence of millions of people in Malawi who rely on fish as their main relish. Over 80 percent of fish in the country is sourced from Lake Malawi.