TMA urged to protect Ramsar site

 The Sakumo Ramsar site.   (Inset):  Some students watching birds at the Sakumo Ramsar site.

The Sakumo Ramsar site. (Inset): Some students watching birds at the Sakumo Ramsar site.

The Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA), has been urged to enact appropriate laws to preserve the Sakumo Ramsar site in order to create a conducive environment for migratory birds.

The Tema Metropolitan Director of Agriculture, Daniel Boadu, who made the call,

said the Ramsar Site was being polluted by the discharge of industrial and domestic sewerage and constant encroachment by estate developers.

Mr. Boadu explained that discharge of waste into the water body increased its organic load, as well as the biochemical oxygen demand of the water body leading to inadequate oxygen to support plant and animal life.Ramsar sites are coastal wetlands where fish and other sea creatures such as crabs, breed.

Mr. Boadu made the call on Friday, at a programme organised by Global Green Environment Network (GLOGEN), an NGO to mark World Migratory Bird Day. In attendance were 50 students from Tema Pentecost Preparatory School.

It was under the theme: Bird life conservation and sustainable management in our ecosystem.”

World Migratory Bird Day was initiated in 2006 by the secretariat of the agreement on Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Water birds (AEWA) in collaboration with the secretariat of the convention on Conservation of migratory species of wild animals.

Mr. Buadu, said migratory birds spent part of their life cycle in different climatic environments such as wetlands, sub-tropical and tropical forests.

“Wetland conditions provide unique habitat for species of birds and fishes among other creatures that cannot survive elsewhere at particular time of their life cycle,” he said.

In Ghana, there are five coastal wetlands designated as Ramsar sites namely Densu delta, Keta Lagoon complex, Muni Pomadze, Sakumo in Tema and Songor.

He said the Sakumo Ramsar site was home to some 80 species of birds.

Head of Research, Ghana Wildlife Society, Mr. Japhet Roberts, said 730 different species of birds migrated from Europe to Ghana and other African countries from November to April every year to avoid the cold weather.

He said the Ramsar sites served as feeding grounds for such birds but he was worried that some people especially children killed or took the birds.

According to him birds played an important role in the pollination of plants.

Mr. Roberts therefore called for a stop to the killing of birds and the pollution of wetlands as they scared away the birds with adverse effect on the country’s agriculture.

The Chief Executive Officer of GLOGEN, Mr. David K. Amankwaah, suggested that issues of environmental management and its sustainable development be made part of the school curriculum to save the future of the country.

 From Godfred B. Gibbah,Tema

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