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Association vows to protect Gambia’s forests

Sep 20, 2011, 1:04 PM | Article By: Nyockeh and Halimatou Ceesay

Members of the Association of the Wood Re-exporters and Forest Users in The Gambia over the weekend held an emergency general body meeting at the Father Farrell Hall, Westfield.

The meeting was meant to discuss the issue of illegal felling of trees and other dubious acts happening in the forests, particularly in the Central and Upper River regions.

The issue is of serious concern to the association, thus the need to convene the meeting, said Lamin Barrow its chairman.

Mr. Barrow told the meeting that, upon receiving a tip-off, the association deemed it necessary to make sure that the malpractices are stopped immediately.

According to Barrow, the association has discovered that there are people exporting wood from other neighbouring countries through Central River and Upper River regions, and the Kombos which the association wants to stop.

He added that his association is working to stop this practice through engaging the ministry of Forestry and the Environment, and the local authorities and security agents.

“As long as we are re-exporting, we are not exploiting the Gambia Forest to export. We don’t want anybody to be using Gambian forests, cutting our forests and send the wood to Kombos for sale,” he said.

At the end of the meeting, the participants recommended the need for the association to embark on a nation-wide sensitization tour.