Mzimba district assistant forestry officer Arden Ngoma has asked community members in Manyamula Extension Planning Area (EPA) in the district to take care of the trees planted in the just-ended 2020/21 tree-planting season.
He said this on Friday during a tour of the area where he also inspected a 26-hectare Tchemba Forest managed by the locals.
Ngoma said: “In the 2020/21 tree-planting season, the district planted about 3.5 million trees. For them to survive and grow, community members should take a leading role to care for them.
“As for Tchemba Forest, I urge the forestry committee to ensure that the forest is protected from charcoal makers.”
Tchemba Forestry Committee chairperson Hellings Simuko said they deployed security officers in the forest to guard it.
On his part, group village head Mteyo Ng’oma said trees planted in the 2020/21 tree-planting season are growing well.
“We agreed that we will punish anyone who destroys the newly planted trees,” he said.
Mzimba is one of the districts where forests have been depleted through charcoal production.
The forests include Mperekezi and Chimaliro.