NGC Media Team: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 15 December 2019:
Last Friday, 13th December 2019, Dr Kandeh Yumkella raised concerns in Parliament about the devasting impact of on-going timber logging and deforestation in the Districts of Kailahun, Kono, Koinadugu, Falaba, and Karene.
Yumkella raised the alarm after his recent visit to some of these vulnerable locations in the past three months, and his visit last week to Kamakwie, Fintonia, Samaya, Kuru, Tanenneh, and Sanya, in the Karene District.
Speaking in Parliament last Friday, Dr. Yumkella pleaded with the Bio government to take urgent action to mitigate the deforestation of the country’s forest reserves. He recalled the video he did a year ago at Hastings, showing logs waiting to be exported.
He also recalled the Speaker of Parliament invited environmental groups to the House of Parliament to explain the extent of deforestation on the nation. It seems their efforts are landing on deaf ears.
Yumkella called upon the government to take proactive steps to plant trees so as to replace those which have been cut down in forest areas in Kailahun, Kenema, Kono, Kambia and Karene districts to sustain viable timber industry in those districts.
He demanded that Parliament should call for a briefing about how the new reforestation fund is being used. MPs from Falaba and Koinadugu also echoed the same demand.
Dr Yumkella expressed his dismay and devastation about what he discovered, as he drove to Kamakwie, especially the bridges along the roads in Karene and throughout Falaba and Koinadugu.
This situation is causing serious problems for the movement of agricultural produce, general trade and other economic activities in the communities, many of whom are completely cut-off from markets during the rainy season.
According to Global Security, Sierra Leone has been ranked as the third most vulnerable nation after Bangladesh and Guinea Bissau to adverse effects of climate change.
Vulnerable populations have low capacity to adapt to climate change; and the rural populations will be the most affected because of their high dependence on rain-fed agriculture and natural resource-based livelihoods.
This risk is only likely to worsen, if the Bio-led government fails to take steps to control timber logging and deforestation.
Yeliboa in Dr Yumkella’s own constituency 062 Samu Chiefdom, is already experiencing the effects of climate change and is gradually being submerged under water.
Sierra Leone will soon be deforested Because of lure for money, nobody is interested in manning the country´s forest. There had recently been an international meeting on global problems. Deforestation was one of the problems which is making our world warm and the climate change.
Will people in Sierra Leone live in water as the Atlantic is increasinly growing up. and the level of water is rising and some parts of the country will be under water and only very few places will be above sea level. Please brothers and sisters, there is no joke about this. Let everybody be busy to curtail the sinking of the country.
Sorry, but I do not know exactly if I am right. About 10 years ago, there was an accusation made against Sam Sumana (C4C) to be involved in the illegal timber trade?
Thank you very much Dr. Yumkella for your stance on this matter. Both the APC and the SLPP have done very badly when it comes to DEFORESTATION. In a MINUTE, they BAN the ACT of DEFORESTATION and in a SECOND, they LIFT the BAN. They just waiver time and time again. That is unacceptable and destructive to our FORESTS and the ENVIRONMENT.
What I would personally like Dr. Yumkella to do is to work with other opposition parties to not only put pressure on the BIO ADMINISTRATION to change course but, to BLUDGEON the president and parliament to pass the necessary legislation to help with this MADNESS that is THREATENING our ENVIRONMENT.
Secondly, the SLPP GOVERNMENT must ask the CHINESE to help TRAIN and EQUIP FOREST RANGERS. Does that makes SENSE. Don’t ask me why I referred to the CHINESE.
Finally, I am also appealing to the C4C PARTY and it’s POLITICIANS to take note because, KONO DISTRICT has been mentioned on this ENVIRONMENTAL CATASTROPHE in this article. I have no doubt in my mind that they will listen and join forces in PARLIAMENT to protect our FORESTS.
GOD BLESS C4C, NGC and our FORESTS. Second to none after the AMAZON if I am right in my personal judgement.