Keeping Zambia Clean

Martin Mulenga Writes:

Apparently, general cleanliness of public places remains a challenge here in Zambia posing a
great risk to our health as citizens. However, history tells us that in 2007 the government
launched the “keep Zambia clean and health campaign” which aimed at keeping our
environment clean in order to improve the health standard throughout the country.
Unfortunately, this campaign hasn’t been taken so seriously in that, others think it’s
government’s responsibilities and not theirs. Forgetting that its everyone’s responsibility to
ensure homes, work places and surrounding areas are kept clean.

From my previous life as an academician, researcher and having graduated with a BA
in philosophy, I learnt a lot in Environmental Ethics of responsibility which talks about how
one should be responsible towards the use of our Environment. Therefore, as an Environment
Activist I considered Zambia with its unclean environment, as the biggest contributor of
climate change. So, I thought I should serve the name of mother Zambia from this by taking a
positive step. Hence, as a concerned citizen I initiated the “keep Zambia Clean Campaign”
over which i was even harassed. This can be evidenced by the video that went viral on media
last year. Generally, the populous thought as a graduate, I should not be doing that kind of
work. To others it seemed that I stooped so low to do that kind of a job. However, few people
stood by and encouraged me to continue doing this noble job. Among the people who
encouraged me I can not Fr Emmanuel Mubanga, Fr. Sauti Lewis and Ms.Misozi Nzenje

Keep Lusaka Clean Campaign

Let me note that in 2022 and this year ( 2023), this unbearable dirty environment compelled
the president of this great nation Mr. Hakainde Hichilema and Her Honor the Vice President
Ms. WK Mutale Nalumango respectively, to come down to the streets of Lusaka and lead
Lusaka residents in cleaning the CBD. In my understanding, this is the work which should be
done by us youths. This is a shame to all of us youths! However, the president’s call to keep
Zambia clean it has become apparent that at least few institutions and individuals are coming
on board. Notedly, we have seen the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unity DMMU and
Lusaka District Commissioner Ms. Rosa K Zulu who have joined hands in order to back the
efforts of the Lusaka city Council in cleaning the CBD by launching a keep Lusaka clean
campaign in which 150 people where engaged and where I happened to be the coordinator.
Be as it may, during my operation I have come to understand that the issue of solid waste
management is mixed with politics which is bad, overlooking the impact and bad result it may
bring. I am the eye witness to these issue of garbage collection more especially in places I have
lived like Kitwe and Lusaka. Here in Lusaka there are people who go at night dumping garbage
in prohibited places like freedom way island and Lumumba. They basically do this so as to
embarrass the government of day. Equally, there some shop owners who operate without dust
bins and proper toilets. This is quite hazardous to public health as this situation can potentially
cause an out break of diseases like Cholera.

My dear citizenry, we all have a moral obligation to keep the environment clean, green and
health. Our president has done enough sensitization and given us enough tools that must be
used. Moreover, there’s a need for Ministry of local government to work hand in hand with
various stakeholders so as to ensure that a country is kept clean as opposed to what is on the
ground. We can’t be talking about the cleaning and floods every year. Further, we need to
ensure that enough bins are placed in CBD’s open spaces to avoid the littering of garbage in
prohibited places.
We have been doing a lot of injustice to the environment. We have mounted the all pressure
on Dr. Pollen Gabriel the National Coordinator for DMMU, because when dirty is left and
drainages are blocked with garbage, this leads to floods which later results in disaster. We need
to equally note that littering is equally one of the leading contributors of climate change which
has brought so much devastating and retrogressive effects on social, economic, biological and
political development of a human being. I therefore, call upon the government to reinforce the
already enacted law that who ever is found littering in prohibited places that person can be
arrested and charged with case of “environmental injury”. I like what Musician Macky 2 says
“secure a future today and tomorrow shall smile at you” this shows that we need everyone’s
involvement remember problem shared is problem solved.

Conclusively, as an environment Activist I have always wanted my vision to be visible,
my voice to be heard and my green project to grow bigger and to be implemented. Therefore,
I thought I could collaborate with a well passionate and spirited people the like Mr Chileshe
Nicholas Mulenga (lecturer at Cavendish University) so that together we can form an
organization and do community work. We have therefore come up with an organization which
is called “THE GREEN COSMOS” which has been registered by the ministry of community
development, we are therefore calling for partnership from different places across the country.
Apparently, the organization’s headquarter is Lusaka but we have opened branches in Kapiri
Mposhi, Ndola, KITWE, Chingola, Katete, Kasama and Mansa . To those who would want to
make use of us you are kindly welcome so that we contribute positively to the wellbeing of
mother Zambia. We are also looking for a place where we can start planting trees on nursery
since our organization is also involved in that.

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