Revealed: Forestry officers selling indigenous trees in Phalombe

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Phalombe district forestry officers are selling indigenous trees including the ‘protected’ cedar from Mulanje Mountain.

According to information gathered by Malawi24 in the district, forestry officers have been collecting money in the name of their office to let people use the trees for products such as timber.

Mulanje cedar

Phalombe district forestry officers are selling indigenous trees from Mulanje MT.(File)

One of the people who wanted to roof his house using timber made from cedar has revealed that he was told by some officers to pay money amounting to K20,000 so as to use such protected trees for timber and was warned that failing to do so will lead to the timber getting confiscated.

“I had a project which I was constructing a friend’s house, so I approached some forestry officers since sometime back when I was roofing my project I was asked to pay money for the project to be finalized,” said the source.

He further alleged that these officers also sell trees which are cut from Michesi and Mulanje mountains for people who want to burn bricks.

When asked to comment on the matter, Phalombe District Forestry Officer (DFO) Erick Mbingwani admitted that he has been receiving such reports that his officers are collecting money instead of seizing the prohibited tree products.

Mbingwani further said he is currently investigating the matter and once he is done his office will not shield anyone found doing such malpractice.

“I have been hearing about this and presently I am investigating it and once I am done I will make sure that these said officers should face the law. Let me say here that people lose jobs because of these issues,” the DFO told Malawi24 in an interview.

Group Village Headman Bwanaisa whose area borders with Mulanje Mountain is on record having said that the mountain is losing its trees because of some greedy forestry officers who solicit money for people to be cutting trees.

Meantime, the district’s forestry office has announced that over 8000 trees are expected to be planted in the district this year.

 

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10 Comments

  1. Sometimes, u so called journalists investigate fully before u sell or buy. news tip.

    We know u, mukugulana k20, 000 per story…. can u imagine the topic itself,, Forestry officers. In phalombe selling indiginous trees including. Cedar. Kkkkk

    Who told. U cedar is an indeginous tree?,, do u know the definition?, phalombe has michesi hill where there;is. No cedar.. This specie is currently found in mt mulanje which is in mulanje District.

    The District has over 100 staff dtationed in Extension And protection… Did they tell u kuti. Akugulitsa. Mitengo ya kuma community forests managed by chiefs?????.

    Did ur shameless. Investigation tell u that all over 100 officers are selling indeginous-trees klkk,,,

    Learn to be professional, ucould hv gone deeper to findout who the culprits. Are. Otherthan turnishing image of all the staff…. this is character assassination and u can be sued for defamation..

    Umuwuze amene wakugulisira nkhaniyo kuti kuphalombe kulibe cedar koma ku mulanje,,, komanso akupase mayina anthu omwe akuwadziwa kuti akuchita izi,,, osati this type of reporting..

    Ukanadziwa kuti omwe amaliza mitengo kuphalombe ndi nomwenu mukumagula makala mtawunimu…. including u she goat of malawi 24,,,,,coz by buying them its like u are creating ready market for charoal producers…..

    Nosense!

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