Makueni, Friday April 20, 2018
A Bishop in Makueni County has claimed that the two month ban on logging by government has caused a dramatic fall in church offerings as people have been barred from harvesting trees in private land.
Pentecostal Evangelistic Fellowship of Africa (PEFA) Bishop, Stanley Muli claimed that offerings have reduced drastically since the government banned the use of forest produce in the country.
Bishop Muli disclosed that with the reduced offering, the most hit were orphans, widows and the needy people in the area whom the church provides with support.
The residents who hail from Mbooni West Sub-County claimed that they depend on trees to either burn charcoal or sell to saw millers in a bid to earn a living and feed their families.
“We don’t rely on government forests. We have planted 90 per cent of our farms with trees after we stopped planting crops. We depend on timber, trees and charcoal to educate our children,” said David Mwanza Mule, a resident.
They made the remarks at the Makueni Boys High school, where they presented their views to a Taskforce, inquiring into resources management and logging activities in Kenya.
The team was set up by the Environment Cabinet Secretary, Keriako Tobiko to study the effects of logging, across the country, it has two weeks to give its report.
Speaking at the function, the head of the taskforce, Ms Linda Munyao urged the residents to be patient and wait for the recommendations of the team from the government.
“We are here to listen to the views and give the recommendations to the government which will act. We have heard your cry. The government came up with this (logging ban) because of the prolonged drought and wants to address the root cause,” said Ms. Munyao.
Makueni County Commissioner Maalim Mohammed said that conservation of the environment needs a multi-agency approach, so as to achieve and manage our environment sustainably.
He said that there was need to gazette Makongo, Makuri, and Nzaui and Mbooni forests in the area.
During the event, saw millers and the community gave their views, saying the conservation efforts should be participatory and inclusive. Other members of the task force were Augustine Masinde and Faith Waigwa.