May 11, 2015, 9:54 AM
Regional Forestry Office in Kerewan on Sunday organised a two-day convergence
for forest users and local authorities on Joint Forest Park Management in
Kumadi and Kasaywa Forest parks in Jokadou and Upper Nuimi, North Bank Region.
The two-day synergy took place in Kerr Jarga Jobe in the North Bank Region.
The joint forest management was held to contribute to the conservation and improvement of forest resources through sustainable management of its resources.
The two-day convergence was funded by the National Forest Fund (NFF) at the department of forestry.
Speaking on the occasion, Ebou Janha, Regional Forestry Officer, thanked district authorities of Jokadou and Upper Nuimi for their “invaluable support” to the department of forestry in protecting and preserving the lost forest cover.
He noted that the Joint Forest Park Management concept was developed in consultation with village representatives and other stakeholders through utilizing the forest park in Central River Region in 1999 by the then Gambia German Forestry Programme (GGFP).
Under the joint forest management, he explained, the programme aimed at preserving 304ha of Kumadi Forest Park in Jokadou and 155.7ha of Kasaya Forest Park in Upper Nuimi.
The initiative would contribute to ensuring they are protected from bushfire, encroachment and other illegal activities.
The NBR Regional Forestry Officer lauded the department for the foresight, saying it is the first of its kind to be implemented in the region.
He hailed the people of Jokadou and Upper Nuimi for their steadfastness in supporting the department of forestry in the protection and preservation of forest resources.
Chief Momodou Chatty Cham of Upper Nuimi commended the department of forestry for the initiatives of empowering communities to take control of the management of the forest.
He said the joint forest park management would contribute to the maximum management of forest resources to bring about sustainable livelihood and development.
The Upper Nuimi chief praised the government for the maintenance of peace and security, saying peace and security is the bedrock of national development.
Momodou B.K. Ceesay, Regional Disaster Management coordinator, said the initiative was in conformity with the framework of disaster risk reduction, noting that forest contributes to the attainment of food security as well as enhances people’s livelihood.
He called on the beneficiary communities to be vigilant in the upkeep of the forest.
Forest park management has to be more orientated towards activities involving the forest adjacent dwellers and other stakeholders in management of natural resources so they are protected and sustainably managed for long time.