President Cyril Ramaphosa visited Daisy Ngedle a grade 3 class at Clarendon Preparatory School in East London. Picture: Bhekizizwe Radebe

East London – A moment of silence was observed on Friday in honour of deceased environmental affairs minister Edna Molewa as President Cyril Ramaphosa launched the Good Green Deeds campaign, conceptualised by Molewa.  

“We are launching the most important campaign that was conceptualised by minister Edna Molewa, who was our leading champion on climate change issues. Edna Molewa was our national conscience on climate change. She was one person who used to go, not only across our country, but across the world, preaching the gospel of climate change,” said Ramaphosa during an address to scores of community members at the Sisa Dukashe Stadium in Mdantsane, Eastern Cape.

“As the world got together in various forums, she was the voice of Africa, the voice of South Africa when it came to climate change issues. Edna Molewa played a leading role in the climate change meeting that took place in Paris. She led not only South Africa and Africa but made sure there was an agreement at the global level. We thank and honour her today.”

Ramaphosa said that in accordance with Molewa's goals, the Good Green Deeds campaign was about citizens – individuals and corporates – playing an active role in the cleanliness and conservation of the country’s flora and fauna.

“We want to be articulating a number of issues here because in a number of ways as people of this country, we seem to have been waging war against the planet. We seem to have been waging war against ourselves by not looking after our planet and our country, by littering in our country, illegal dumping, the pollution of our air, seas, and rivers. All these things have a negative impact on our health, on the quality of life and the very appearance of our country,” said Ramaphosa.

“Now we have a great opportunity to make sure that from today onwards, we take steps to look after our environment. There are many things we can learn from each other. We can even learn from young children. I learnt to stop littering from my own children, who were still young. Each time they saw me throwing away a piece of paper, they would say ‘dad do not litter’. We must stop littering.”

African News Agency (ANA)