Government has commended Zambian Breweries’ Manja Pamodzi project for empowering women and thereby helping reduce gender based violence (GBV).
The project is also helping communities remain clean and reduce disease burdens, said Kapwepwe Ward 25 councillor Patrick Mwamba Salubusa during the Manja Pamodzi clean up in Chunga, Lusaka, on Saturday (March 4).
“A dirty place is an eyesore. I commend the Manja Pamodzi project for its vigorous stance on cleaning places and ensuring that those engaged in the clean-up earn something. It motivates the community to ensure that they are living in a clean place as they collect the recyclable packaging material and sell to the project,” Mr Salubusa said.
“Manja Pamodzi is responding to issues we are talking about as government like empowering people. This whole ward is a shanty compound. In Desai and Paradise, GBV is the talk of the day and is high because women depend on men to buy anything, hence husbands abusing them. With this project, we hope the cases reduce as women will earn some money (by selling recyclable material to ZB) and not solely depend on their husbands.”
He said the clean-up project was a good opportunity, especially since some of the settlements in Chunga such as Desai and Paradise were unplanned settlements and susceptible to cholera.
“We need interventions like this one. We are also educating children on how to keep the environment clean. For us this is on-going,” he said.
Manja Pamodzi aggregator Kennedy Zulu encouraged collectors to continue collecting recyclable materials as it was a good business that was meant to empower them. Further, he explained that the collectors did not need initial monetary investment as the financial and material support was contributed by Zambian Breweries and the Millennium Challenge Account.
And Zambian Breweries corporate affairs director Ezekiel Sekele said the project had intensified waste collection and he was happy with the communities’ enthusiasm for keeping their environment clean.
“We are delighted and impressed with the communities because they have taken it upon themselves to collect the recyclable solid waste through the aggregators. They do nothave to wait for anyone to ask them or force them to collect the material ultimately earning income for themselves,” Mr. Sekele said.
About 2,000 kilograms of recyclable materials were collected during the exercise, which also saw the ten groups that were involved receiving various goods which included , two plate cookers, itel smart phones, shopping vouchers, mealie meal, cooking oil and sugar as bonuses.