Minister urges collective efforts to combat deforestation
The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Mr. John Peter Amewu has emphasized the need for a collective effort by various stakeholders especially, traditional rulers in addressing the challenges of deforestation and forest degradation that the country is currently being faced with.

Date Created : 6/22/2017 2:54:08 AM : Story Author : Frimpong Emmanuel/

“Our traditional rulers (Togbewo, Mamawo, Nananon and Queen Mothers) who are also custodians of the land have big roles to play in complementing the efforts of state institutions in the challenges of deforestation and forest degradation”. “Educational institutions, religious bodies, civil society and community-based organizations and the media also have a key role to play in the awareness campaign”.

 The Minister stated this at a colourful event to mark the 6th Forestry Week and Greening Ghana Day Celebration which was held at Hohoe in the Volta Region. The programme was on the theme: “Forest and Energy Implications for Ghana”.

 In his keynote address, Mr. Amewu bemoaned the fact that various forest reserves which previously provided essential ecosystems services such as timber, food, fuel, protection of water bodies, prevention of land degradation and desertification, conservation of biodiversity, climate change mitigation and also provided livelihood support have been lost through high levels of illegal logging, chainsaw and mining activities.

 In addition, the minister noted that poor farming practices, annual wildfires, population pressure and the complex nature of Ghana’s land tenure system coupled with weak law enforcement has further worsen the situation.

 He said the results of our disregard for the environment has led to the harsh impact of climate change with its consequential effects of high temperatures, unpredictable rainfall pattern and low  agricultural productivity, “which we are experiencing in Ghana and many parts of the world”.

 Mr. Amewu however, noted that in order to derive maximum benefits from the purposes of the forest and trees outside the forest, there was the need to develop the culture of replanting to help reverse the present situation.

“Fortunately, unlike gold and other mineral resources, trees are renewable resources and hence can be regenerated when they are harvested or exploited” he added.

 Meanwhile, over 15,000 seedlings of various tree species have been supplied by the Forestry Commission to be planted within the Hohoe Municipality. It was also revealed that another 5000 seedlings had early on been supplied by the same institution to be planted along the banks of river Dayi.