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Ghana will be made green again- Forestry Commission assures

The Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, Mr Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, has assured that the commission is poised to making Ghana green again as it plans to plant several thousands of trees across the country.

This, Mr Afriyie said, would be done in collaboration with the Youth Employment Agency (YEA).  The two organizations signed a Memorandum of Understanding meant to engage15, 000 youth for the tree planting project under the Youth in Agriculture and Afforestation Module.

The Greening Ghana programme is an initiative championed  by Forestry Commission and is targeted at making Ghana green within the next 10 years through planting trees at public places including major roadsides, schools, hospitals, hotels, churchyards and around water-bodies.

Addressing the media recently after a visit to the Achimota Nursery Site to see the progress of work done so far,  Mr. Afriyie, stated, “By the next 10 years, we will ensure that Ghana is green again. In some places, when you touch down you see that the entire country is green with trees; we want to replicate that in Ghana.”

He added, “like I said,  the essence[of the programme] is to make Ghana  green and so we are going to  go to schools,  Hospitals, Dam sites and River bodies  and  wherever we can find a place  which needs to have the trees planted.”

He announced that the Commission has been given 30 acres of land at the West Africa Secondary School to plant these trees, adding, “Pantang Hospital,were very  happy,  they have 35 acres  we have  gone there  and we have examine those places, Prampram Secondary School 20 acres,   Weija  cluster of schools, Achimota  forest  and  the Weija Dam site.”

He reiterated,“we are not going to spare any place that need to be made green   and  so by the next  ten  years, we will ensure that Ghana  is  green again. I have travelled   to so many countries and my deputy as well.  In  some places, as  soon as  you touch  down  and  you look at te  urban centres you will see that it  is  all  green  and  the  advantages  you  get from  that is  myriad  and  we  want to bring that  here and  to grow  the  trees  around  the roads  and all  places  and make  sure  that we  make  the places  green again.”

Commenting on the YEA programmes,  Mr  Afriyie  indicated  that the initiative has  been oversubscribed, adding, “We were  supposed  to employ 15,000  people  as I indicated today,  it’s  been oversubscribed,  we  are now about 33 thousand and over  and still counting.which demonstrates  that   the young men and women in this country are desirous of getting some employment,  and that they don’t want to depend  on people  for support and  that they want to help  themselves.”

On his part, Mr Hugh Brown, Director of Operations, Forestry Services Division informed  the  media  that the trees would also be planted  in the Achimota forest to give it the needed facelift.

He explained, … “the Achimota forest this is a very degraded forest reserve as you can see, if you look around, you don’t see very large trees, basically what we see are shrubs so what we want to do with this, we are demarcating one hundred acres this year and we will cut strips which will be two meters wide and plant at five metres interval. On the average we will be planting about 400 trees per hectares so that is the strategy for this place so workers will be doing the maintenance and weeding until the trees get out of the ticket canopy,

“This is just Achimota, even within grater Accra we have other sides we have identified. We are going to be working closely with the prisons and we will be working with Pantang mental hospital and some other institutions who have graciously allocated lands for us to plant”

a school, like West Africa secondary, we have about 30 acres.  Across the country we are doing similar projects   in communities cities   and then beyond  that we are targeting some degraded  forest reserves  and  using this  same workers to establish  plantations,

For  the forest  reserves, we will be planting only timber species which will  provide timber  products  for industry usage and  for development, for a  place like this, we are planting mainly for conservation purposes to  ensure that the wildlife  here gets a more habitable p to live”


By Mohammed Suleman


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