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Sustainable development needs chiefs’ involvement, says Katema

CATHERINE MUMBA, Lusaka
MINISTER of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs Joseph Katema says meaningful and sustainable development can be achieved by engaging traditional leaders in governance programmes such as promoting peace and stability.
Dr Katema said, at the closing of a ‘Female Chiefs as Advocates of Peace and Stability’ conference in Lusaka on Wednesday, that the values of peace and unity, correct usage of natural resources and development of chiefdoms can only be achieved if traditional rulers are involved.
“I am reliably informed that the people in the chiefdoms value the messages of goodwill and are ready to adhere to the direction as given by our traditional leaders,” he said.
Dr Katema said Zambia has been heralded as a peaceful state locally and globally, and that this peace ought to be guarded jealously.
He said Zambians have exhibited oneness despite different social affiliations.
The minister stated that “maintaining peace and unity is feasible through constant sensitisation on peace and unity messaging and through such programmes as the female chiefs as advocates of peace and stability within the communities.”
Dr Katema also said the usage of natural resources in the country is becoming more of a national issue because natural vegetation is being depleted to the detriment of both the current and future generations.
“We ought to begin to understand the implications of deforestation and its effect on our wellbeing and that of our children. Zambia is not an island: as part of the global village, we do not just deprive ourselves of the benefits of the natural vegetation but also cross planetary boundaries,” Dr Katema said.
And Chieftainess Nyakuleng’a of North- Western Province said, on behalf of other women chiefs, that Government should organise more of such conferences because there is a lot that needs to be done.
She thanked the organisers of the conference and urged more organisations to emulate them in spreading messages of peace and unity in the country.



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