Ghana — Mr. Clement Manu, Co-ordinator of the NationalDisaster Management Organization (NADMO) for the Ejisu-Juaben district hascalled for the creation of a forestry district at Ejisu to control forestdegradation.
The Co-ordinator, who was launching the anti-bush firecampaign appealed to the Ministry of Lands and Forestry and the ForestryCommission to consider his suggestion because it would go a long way tosafeguard against wanton depletion forest resources in the area.
It would also ensure the effective monitoring and controlof illegal felling of lumber.
He noted that the non-existence of a district forestryofficer at Ejisu has contributed to the spate of illegal chainsaw operations inthe district.
According to him, the monitoring of illegal chainsawoperations is not effective since forestry officials responsible forEjisu-Juaben district are stationed far away at Nkawie, Juaso, Kumawu and Bekwai.
Mr. Manu intends to collaborate with the police, ForestryServices Division (FSD), and Special Task Forces to clamp down on illegallogging in the district.
He has therefore urged Unit committees to be vigilant andcheck the practice in their areas.
The Co-ordinator noted that besides the economic benefits,forests serves as wind breaks and helps to avoid disasters.
In the interim, Co-ordinator Manu proposed the mounting ofa barrier at the entry points of the district to check the movement of chainsawoperators and has urged the public to report activities of chainsaw operator tohis outfit for necessary action.
On prevention of bush fires, Mr. Manu urged farmers torely on Disaster Volunteer Groups to assist them to create farm belts beforethey burn their farms. He also appealed to chiefs to assist NADMO play ameaningful role in the lives of Ghanaians.
Manu as well encouraged developers to insure theirbuildings in order to cushion effects of disasters when they occur. According tothe NADMO co-ordinator, NADMO could only help alleviate such situations and notbear the total loss hence the need to be extra careful with fire.
Mr. Joseph Fotwe-Blankson of the Finance andAdministration department of NADMO cautioned the public, particularly farmersand palm wine tappers, to be mindful about handling fire at this time of theyear. According to him, managing disasters are cheaper than rehabilitating firevictims.
Mr. Peter Bonsu, manpower Mobilization officer alsoreminded the public that the law regulating bush fires was still in force.
He noted, however that the law was not be effectivelyenforced and called on the government to make it work by ensuring that offendersare dealt with.