Former President of the Republic of Malawi Dr Joyce Banda was on Tuesday accompanied by the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Michael Usi to receive a prestigious community centred best Forestry Initiative in Africa Award at the COP28 currently underway in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The Former President led a delegation of representatives from Community Development Initiative (CDI), and Irise Homes at the COP28 African Investment Earthshot Leaders Summit to receive the African NDC Forestry Initiative Award.
CDI partnered with US-based Irise Homes and in their quest to transform the area of Traditional Authority, (T/A) Nyanja of Kasungu in promoting commercial farming, environmental management and use of clean energy.
Dr. Joyce Banda was among high level delegates who attended the Africa Investment Earthshot Leaders Summit alongside Namibian President Hage Gottfried Geingob.
President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, President Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leone, President Félix Tshisekedi of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and President Hage Gottfried Geingob of Namibia were winners of Presidential Initiative Awards in various categories.
Before the Awards ceremony, leaders and business captains discussed challenges and game changing solutions to the climate crisis focusing on potential funding models for a broad range of interventions including energy Infrastructure.
The Former President was joined by Irise Homes Chief Executive Officer Jason Rosamond, one of the Directors Alex Petfer and CDI Board Member Mara Kum’bweza.
She dedicated the Award to the people of Malawi, President Lazarus Chakwera and the government of Malawi for creating an enabling environment for CDI and Irise Homes to operate freely.
The Former Malawi leader thanked the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Michael Usi for dedicated service to the nation saying he is very cooperative and understands the importance of collective efforts if the country is to achieve its agenda in environment and natural resources affairs.
Dr. Banda possesses the traits needed during this period of great challenges in Malawi’s, and Africa’s, history.
Before her active career in politics, she established several nongovernmental and charitable foundations, all geared toward improving the lives of people in rural areas and the marginalized.
The Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) appointed Dr. Joyce Banda, as a champion of Climate Change and Justice in Africa.
She earned the championship because of her unwavering passion for speaking about climate justice and the need for compensation for countries that are suffering because of climate injustice through no fault of their own.
Earlier this year, Malawi suffered one of its worst tropical cyclones ever.
Cyclone Freddy caused extreme rainfall, flooding, and catastrophic mudslides. The most extreme rainfall was in Nkulambe, Phalombe, where 42.5 inches (108 centimeters) fell in just four days. That is more than the area normally receives in a year.
Well over 2.5 million people were affected, with more than 600,000 people displaced, 679 dead, 537 missing, and 2,186 injured.
President Dr Lazarus Chakwera appointed Dr. Joyce Banda and Former President Bakili Muluzi as Goodwill Ambassadors on Cyclone Freddy Recovery.