By Spy Uganda
The free Fort portal city and River Mpanga from plastics campaign is an initiative that was launched in 2020 by (AFRIYEA) a youth-led organization with an aim to inspire and motive the public to pioneer in environment conservation through various innovative ways such as recycling of non-biodegradable materials reduce the plastics that had chocked river Mpanga which is the main source of water serving seven districts in Rwenzori region flowing from the mountains in Karangura, via the fort portal city, Kamwenge, Kyenjojo Kitangwenda till lake George traversing an approximate of 270km.
The August cleaning was flagged off by the newly crowned queens of Tooro who noted this; “We are so much interested in environmental conservation and we shall keep on partnering with AFRIYEA and other environmental organizations in order to add a voice in freeing the river from plastics.
Team leader further said; “As Suzan Kahunde Adyeri, and my team Miss Tourism Tooro, Kobusinge Angel Akiiki 1st runner’s up and Kemigisa Bridget miss Talent we commend the work of AFRIYEA and the fact that we are the Tooro Queens, We thought joining this Campaign would help to inspire the youth and community at Large to always take caution and create awareness that conservation is in our hands for we are the future beneficiary of the conserved Nature.”
“I, therefore, extend my sincere appreciation to everyone that participated in the Campaign and I appeal to the people of Tooro that not everything has to wait for government because we are the front line owners of our home. Hospitality is what defines Tooro so volunteering has nothing to do with Ranks and the positions we hold in our community but has a thing to do with togetherness to reach a common goal for sustainable Future and development of Tooro,” said Suzan.
Lieven Peteers, the country director of Iles de paix commended AFRIYEA for the great initiative to free the river from plastics which have caused a lot of damage to the soils and biodiversity. The generation of aesthetic pollution, plastic residues directly affect soil properties hence causing retardation of crop growth, affecting farm operations and potentially harming wildlife through ingestion.
”We are happy to have for this partnership with an organization like AFRIYEA,” said Peteers.
Mark Kateeba a staff from the ministry of lands said that this campaign is a great cause, unlike other campaigns that remain on paper. This action-packed and called upon the general public to always respond positively when they are asked to participate in the campaign.
“Everyone wants to leave in a clean and healthy environment not so? So it’s incumbent upon us to promote this campaign ourselves because it’s for our own benefit,” said Mark
Richard Muhumuza the Central Division Mayor of Fort Portal city, appreciated the organizers for involving many stakeholders in the cause of cleaning River Mpanga.
He also called upon fellow leaders to sensitize the masses about the proper use of water resources. In addition, he revealed that the council is in plans to adopt a new policy on waste management in town.
Peter Nsamba, the project’s director at AFRIYEA appreciated all the partners for joining hands with AFRIYEA to clean the river.
“About 1.2 million depend on the water from this river and if we don’t take this campaign seriously we shall lose the river to plastics,” said Peter.
He added; “As an organization, we have already initiated a plan for a joint sustainable plan for the river that will be used to clean, protect and restore it and this will ensure different partners play different roles.”