State stresses engagement of religious leaders in clean energy campaign

MOSHI, Kilimanjaro: ENERGY Deputy Minister Judith Kapinga has underscored the importance of religious leaders in motivating the public to use clean energy for cooking.

Ms Kapinga made the statement in Kilimanjaro Region when graced an event of handing over a donation of 1000 gas cylinders and stoves to various religious leaders, on Monday, this week.

The donation, which was made by the Oryx Gas Tanzania Limited (OGTL), aimed to engage the group in protection and preserving environment by stopping the use of charcoal and firewood.

The Deputy Minister emphasized that religious leaders are worthy people and their followers value and listen to them.

“Therefore, they have a big opportunity to participate in motivating the use of clean energy for cooking along with encouraging the public to stop using firewood and charcoal so as to avoid damaging the environment through cutting down trees,” she said.

“We have big trust in religious leaders that they can help us to educate the citizens about protecting the environment,” said Deputy Minister Kapinga.

She argued that the cutting down of trees has been detrimental since even the regions that were initially getting enough rains, such as those in Southern highlands, are no longer experiencing the same.

“This is due to, among others, human activities that destroy the environment. Therefore, we believe that religious leaders are in a better position to help us in reminding the public over protecting the environment,” she continued.

Elaborating on government’s clean energy campaign, she said, late last year at the COP28 Climate Summit President Samia Suluhu Hassan went with special agenda of saving African woman.

“At this COP, we seek to mobilize support for increased use of clean and affordable cooking fuels and technologies across Africa, especially for women,” President Samia said in her speech.

Therefore, Dr Kapinga argued that when speaking of clean energy, it is something in the heart of President Samia who has made is as among her big agendas.

On his part, OGTL’s Sales Manager Shaban Fundi, who represented company’s Managing Director Benoite Araman, said for a long time they have been enabling different social groups to shift to clean energy use.

“We believe that doing this is to serve the community and nation at large because cooking with gas is to improve health of women. Also, we contribute to keeping students at school instead of being sent to searching for firewood,” Mr Fundi explained.

He said in recognizing the role of religious leaders the company has seen it important to offer the gas cylinders to this group along with campaigning for environment protection.

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