Forestry Commission decries rampant wildfires within transitional zones

The Forestry Commission (FC) has expressed worried about the rampant spate of wildfires within the transi­tional zones of the country.

The menace according to the Commission poses a serious threat to food security of the country as fire continues to wreck havoc to those areas which is the food basket of the country.

The transitional belt covers the Bono East, Northern part of Ashanti, Savanna and Bono Regions.

The area is noted for the production of staple crops such as maize, rice, cowpea, yam, cashew and mangoes.

The Deputy Bono East Regional Man­ager, Forest Services Division of For­estry Commission, Reverend Jonathan Obour-Wiredu raised the concerns at the inauguration of fire volunteer squads for the transition landscape at Akumadan in Offinso North of Ashanti Region on Friday by ECO Care Ghana, an NGO, as part of its LEARN project.

The five- million Euros project, being funded by the European Union was aimed to introduce trained fire volunteers to com­munity members to create awareness on wildlife prevention and control especially in three districts- offinso North and South and Techiman within the transitional belt of the country.

The Forestry Commission he said had ensured the planting of 12 million trees seedlings during the Green Ghana Day last year in the Bono East Region.

Rev. Obour-Wiredu called for concerted efforts from stakeholders especially local au­thorities within the affected areas to protect the environment against wildfires to safe­guard food security of the country.

“The current weather is just like what pertains in 1983 era where the entire country experienced wildfires with the resultant food crisis, we must be careful we don’t slip into that period,” he said.

He commended the NGO for the initia­tive and that the Forestry Commission would play its part for successful implementation of the project.

The Managing Campaigner of ECO Care Ghana, Obed Owusu Addai in an interview with the Ghanaian Times disclosed that 200 fire volunteers grouped into five had be trained by his outfit to carry out fire sensiti­sation activities in 15 communities within the three districts in the traditional belt.

The fire volunteers, he said were provid­ed with working tools such as cutlasses and Willington boots to boost their operations.

He said some farmers have been engaged to nurse 600,000 tree seedlings to be planted during green Ghana Day to check effect of climate change in the area.


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