A National Planning Committee for the 2022 Greening Ghana Project has been inaugurated in Accra, with a charge to make the initiative citizen-owned to attract the involvement of all Ghanaians.
Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abdulai Jinapor, explained that the country’s quest to restore its lost forest cover would only be successful if all Ghanaians were made to believe their contributions was critical.
To this end, he asked the committee to decentralise plans and strategies for next year’s exercise in a way that ensures all Ghanaians participate with all their efforts.
The committee, which was inaugurated on Friday, is chaired by the Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Benito Owusu-Bio.
The members include Ehunabobrim Nana Prah Agyenseim (VI), Paramount Chief of Assin Owirenkyi Traditional Area; Joyce Aryee, Executive Director of the Salt and Light Ministry; Kweku Sakyi-Addo, Ernest Boateng and Lord Commey.
The full composition the Committee would also include representatives of some institutions including the Forestry Commission, Ghana Police Service, Ghana Chamber of Mines, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Defense.
The minister said the early inauguration of the committee was to afford them ample time in reviewing this year’s exercise and adequately plan for 2021.
The review, he noted, should take into account the state of the trees planted, challenges with nurturing, lessons, and shortfalls in organisation, among others.
Mr Jinapor said the committee was expected to provide an update of the review to Ghanaians and work towards sensitising the public on the need to plant trees.
Although he did not state the target for trees to be planted, the minister said the exercise would be much broad and surpass the seven million trees planted in 2021.
He indicated that the ministry would by January next year launch the exercise and announce all the arrangements that had been put in place.
“The 2022 tree planting exercise will be bigger and much broad-based. We want to make it morally delinquent not to be part of the tree planting initiative.
Let us ensure the involvement of all groups, schools, agencies, faith-based organisations, ministries and fun clubs,” Mr Jinapor added.
Mr Owusu-Bio, on his part, stated that despite the success of last year’s exercise, some of the trees planted in urban areas were lost due to harsh conditions.
He said the committee would commence the planning process for next year’s planting to address all shortfalls that could result in losing the trees.
The Forestry Commission, he noted, was developing cage boxes to protect trees planted, especially in cities.
Nana Prah Agyenseim VI reiterated the commitment of the committee to ensure the project succeeds in restoring the country’s green vegetation.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS