Gambia — The Regional Project on Sustainable Management of Endemic Ruminant Livestock in West Africa (PROGEBE-Gambia) Wednesday embarked on an anti-bushfire campaign at Nianija District in Central River Region (CRR) North.
The event was marked by presentation of firefighting equipment to the community where the project is being implemented. The firefighting equipment included sprayers and fire beaters.
In his statement, the regional governor, Alhaji Ganyie Touray, underscored the numerous achievements registered by the project in Nianija District. He explained that the project was established for the sustainable and management of endemic ruminant livestock in the region.
He told the people that they can sustain and manage their ruminants if they protect their grazing areas, which are the forests.
Governor Touray emphasised the need to protect and control the forests against bushfires, as the importance of the forests cannot be overemphasised. He also advised the communities in the region to stop farming on the cattle tracking, as the herders use it to get access to their grazing areas.
Dr Famara Sanyang, the National Project coordinator of PROGEBE-Gambia, explained that the project is a sub-regional project and is also being implemented in Senegal, Mali and Guinea. He highlighted on some of the achievements of the project, saying it has dug five boreholes -three in Niamina East and two in Nianija.
He continued: “The project has created some cattle tracks or routes for easy access for the grazing of the livestock, they have established milk processing units in Njau and Kudang and provided motorbike for the collection of milk.”
Sanyang also dilated on the importance of protecting and controlling the forest against bushfires, pointing out that the forests have multiple functions as most of the rural dwellers depend on them as a cheap source of animal grazing and construction.
The chief of Nianija, Alasan David Cham, commended the Gambia government and the project staff for their efforts in eradicating poverty. He acknowledged that the firefighting equipment provided to them by the project would go a long way towards empowering them in protecting the forest against bushfires, which are the major factors of deforestation.
He also assured them that the equipment would be put into good use. Mamud Njie, the project site coordinator of Nianija District, chaired the occasion. The failure was in the forest areas.Advertisement
Following a 10-year strategy, ACT fire managers have created a mosaic across the landscape of different fuel levels, burning at every opportunity.
But forests have been too wet to burn this spring and the past two summers.
A network of 500 fire trails and strategic burns along the north-west urban edge, heavy grazing and extra grass slashing will create a fortress for the territory which forecasters say faces a higher than average risk this summer.
After a fire-fuelled tornado in January 2003 killed four Canberrans and frightened thousands more, CSIRO fire expert Phil Cheney told the subsequent inquiry the fire’s penetration into urban areas under extreme conditions did not reflect a failure of fuel management on the urban interface.