Forest Monitoring System for Takoradi District launched

A sustainable Forest Monitoring System for the Takoradi Forest District has been launched here on Saturday.

The Takoradi Forest District have Cape Three Points Forest Reserve (CTPFR) in the Ahanta West Municipality and Subri River Forest Reserve (SRFR) in the Wassa East District which is the largest forest reserve in the country with 160 kilometres square designed as a Global Significant Biodiversity Area (GSBA).

The project funded by Global Forest Watch Small Grant Fund is to build the forest monitoring capacity of communities and forest managers to reduce deforestation in the Takoradi Forest District through enhanced community-based monitoring and effective enforcement of forest protection regulations.

Speaking at the launch, Mr Stephen Kankam, a Deputy Director at Hen Mpoano a non-governmental organisation (NGO), the implementers of the project, said Cape Three Points was the only site and forest with much diversity that students went there to acquire more knowledge during their studies.

Therefore, if human activities were not regulated and the forest was destroyed, it would cost Ghana to send students to other countries for studies.

He said despite this high biodiversity, the ecological integrity of the reserves was increasingly threatened by human activities through habitat destruction, illegal mining (galamsey) and indiscriminate lumbering in the forests.

Mr Kankam said the destruction of mangroves which played a major role in the breeding of not only marine life but some birds could be stopped and more mangroves replanted to restore the life at those particular areas.

He said Hen Mpoano was into health education and so provided health care services, especially to deprived areas where their work was more felt.

The Project Manager, Mr Justice Camillus Mensah said the Takoradi Forest District was very unique because it had two major forest reserves that provided life to human and some marine creatures in their strategically located positions.

He said these reserves contained many different species of birds, fishes and others which needed to be preserved and occasionally used by man in some cases with the permission or licence from the Wildlife Division of the Forestry Commission.

Mr Mensah said these areas have been designated as biodiversity areas, but inadequate human resources and logistics have not allowed the needed monitoring at the reserves and therefore much collaboration was needed with the communities to work effectively to attain the needed goals of the project.

The chairman for the launch, Nana Bozza IX of Akatakyi appealed to the Forestry Commission and their subsidiaries to liaise with the traditional authorities to fight the menace in order to save the forests from total destruction.

FROM PETER GBAMBILA, TAKORADI

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