Saturday, May 9, 2009

Education key to sustainable future, says global consumer body

By Allen Mushatsi
Business Times; Friday 17 – 23, October 2008

Consumer organizations round the world have called on national governments to implement the UNEP Guidelines on Education for Sustainable Consumption in formal education. The message has been put forward by consumer international body which organized Consumer Action Day recently worldwide.

The Tanzania Consumer Advocacy Society (TCAS) under its Executive Director Bernard Kihiyo, joined global consumer movement in call for education for sustainable consumption. The coordinate day of action has bee organized by the global consumer movement as a means of empowering consumer to make responsible decisions from a young age.

As outlined in UNEP’s here and now: Education for Sustainable Consumption, sustainable consumer choices are crucial to social development and environment protection. Sustainable consumption is also a key theme within the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.

“This is why Consumers International member organizations around the world, including Tanzania Consumer Advocacy Society, are calling on ministries of environment to endorse the UNEP Guidelines and asking ministries of education to incorporate the recommendations on sustainable consumption within the national curriculum”, said Kihiyo.

According to the organisers, the aim of the consumer action day is to draw attention to the importance of Education for Sustainable Consumption and the Guidelines. Moreover, it gives ministries the opportunity to publicly voice their support for the adoption of the Guidelines on national level as part of formal education in the national curricula and on international lever as part of 10YFP.

During the event, Samuel Ochieng, president of Consumer International, said, “The world recognises the need for sustainable choices if we are to meet our development goals and secure a fair and just future for our children. Consumers, government and corporations must all take responsibility here, and we believe teaching our younger generations about sustainable consumption practise is the best way to help realise that responsibility in the long term.”

On his part Daimon Mwakyembe, Chairman of Tanzania Consumer Advocacy Society said, “it is only when Tanzania consumers are fully aware of their rights and responsibilities that Tanzania can attain sustainable development, which covers all people from all walks of lives.”

Consumer International (CI) is the only independent global campaigning voice for consumers. With over 220 member organization in 115 countries, CI builds a powerful international consumer movement to help protect and empower consumers everywhere.

Tanzania Consumer advocacy Society is a support member of consumes International’s activities. It is an independent consumers’ voice whose intention is to forge a strong Consumers-Private-Public-Partnership with all sectoral regulatory authorities existing in Tanzania, local and international non-governmental organizations to supplement government efforts on promotion and protection of consumers’ rights in Tanzania.

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