Ghana — Tongo (UE), March 5, GNA- World Vision, a non-governmental organization, in collaboration with the Ghana Fire Service, have trained 109 fire fighter stewards in the Talensi-Nabdam District of the Upper East Region.
The volunteer fire fighters who were taken through a three-week training by the District Fire Service department, came from four communities in the District namely Yinduri, Wakii, Yameriga and Tongo-Beon.
Speaking at the passing out ceremony, the Programme Manager of the Talensi Nabdam Area Development project of World Vision, Mr. Norbert Akolbila, explained that his outfit was undertaking a project known as Framer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR), which aimed at boosting vegetation growth and curbing environmental degradation.
He emphasized that the purpose for training the fire volunteers was to help prevent the area’s vegetation from being destroyed by fire.
He explained that under the FMNR, the farmers select the shrubs or stumps they would utilize and decide how many stems would be allowed to grow on each stump based on the farmer’s needs, with the ultimate aim of re-forestation.
The Programme Manager indicated that it was the hope of World Vision that, with the training of the fire fighters and support from the community members, the vegetation cover in the community would improve in a short while.
Mr Akolbila stressed the need for a multi-sectoral approach to deal with the problems of bush fires, which were common in the area and often led to desertification and environmental degradation. He added that the Assemblies, NGOs, Traditional authorities, community members and the media, among others, must all get involved in fighting bush fires.
In a speech read for her, the District Chief Executive for the area, Mrs. Vivian Anafo, commended the NGO for such a laudable idea and said the Assembly had come out with by-laws on bush fires, empowering traditional authorities and community leaders to arrest and punish people who engaged in setting bushfires in the area.
She stated that the Assembly had also instituted a programme to award communities that did not engage in the starting of bushfires for a specified period.
She assured the fire volunteers that the District Assembly would motivate and help to provide them with the necessary logistics to enable them to discharge their duties effectively.
The Regional Fire Officer, Alhaji Wynni Azomyan, entreated the fire volunteers to take their work seriously and work diligently to prevent the rampant bush fires in the area.
He urged them to embark on sensitization programmes to educate the people on the need to refrain from causing bushfires which destroyed the environment.