Strong Environmental Health Systems Key to Achieving SDGs
As Malawi joined the rest of the world in celebrating World Environmental Health Day on Monday, Sept 26, local environmental experts said the country needs to do more to achieve environmental health systems that could help in achieving the 2030 global Sustainable Development Goals.
Maloto Chikombero says the mere fact that cholera has currently affected most districts of the country is a clear indicator that our environmental health systems are poor and highly affecting the lives of people.
“Government should join hands with organizations in fighting the challenges prevalent in the environmental health sector,” Chikombero said.
He further says; “The country is highly characterized by poor hygiene and that as a country we need to invest much in our environmental health system so that the Sustainable Development goals should be met.”
On the other hand, another expert Godfrey Mfiti says educating the people about environmental health systems needs to start at the grassroots level and implemented in the education curriculum.
“Good strategies like maintaining of the eco system, planting trees, and construction of pit latrines and strategies that will help in eliminating thin plastic production need to be put in place if the environmental health systems in the country are to be achieved,” Mfiti said.
He hints on the need for serious attention on waste disposal and management methods to curb the effects of climate change in Malawi.
“We do not have a strategy which aims at maintaining the environmental health involves issues like maintenance of waste disposal methods. Our waste disposal methods are very poor such as that waste is dumped anyhow regardless of the type of waste that we have,” said Mfiti.
World Environmental Health Day is celebrated on 26th September annually, and this year is was celebrated under the theme Strengthening Environmental Health Systems for the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.
(By Doreen Shamiel Phiri - ZBS)