A memorandum of understanding has been signed among five organizations with the aim to undertake a landscape restoration in the Tain II Forest reserve and its fringe areas in the Brong Ahafo Region . Similar gesture is expected to be extended to other forest reserves in the country.
The agreement, which was signed among the Forestry Commission, Form Ghana Limited, Form International BV, the Brekum Traditional Council and the Brekum Municipal Assembly will start with a pilot intervention covering an area of approximately 2,000 hectares and ultimately intended to restore a landscape of 10,000 hectares(1,000 KM2) in and around the Tain II forest reserve in the Brong Ahafo Region.
The agreement covers a period of four-years, from 2017 to 2021, for phase I and it is expected to cost $6million. It is being supported by partnerships for forests, a Department for International Development, Uk (DFID) programme.
At the signing ceremony, in Accra last week, the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, Mr John Allotey, said after successful first term, a revised agreement will be signed, which will extend the agreement for further four years.
Mr Allotey, submitted, “This MoU builds on a Public Private Partnership established in 2013,between the forestry Commission, the Brekum traditional Council and form Ghana to restore the Tain II forest reserve. This is part of efforts to advance PPP initiatives by the government of Ghana and the forestry commission’s mandate to ensure the sustainable management of Ghana’s Forests.
He told the gathering that the pilot intervention would focus mainly on community owned and managed land fringing the Tain II forest reserve.
Parties to the agreement, he said, have committed to increasing tree cover and making agriculture and forestry more sustainable and more profitable; provide enhanced social and economic perspective to local communities and businesses as well as make local communities more resilient to external threats such as climate change.
They have also committed to improving the governance of the landscape tol achieve good stewardship, reduce wildfire risk as well as combat forest encroachment and illegal logging.
He continued, “Under this project, the partnership will develop Suitable agricultural and forestry systems tailored to the local area, provide technical assistance and inputs to farmers assists with fire control and environmental management.”
The Tain II forest reserve which is located in the Brong Ahafo Region, has been degraded through wild fires and illegal forest activities which have reduced the reserve’s ability to supply timber and other forest products and services for the forest sector and local population.
“The Forest reserve and the fringe areas therefore need urgent attention as in its current state, biodiversity is at risk, quality of current agriculture and forest plantation is low, and the reserve experiences wild fire among other threats,” Mr Allotey added.
The Omanhene of Berekum Traditional Area,Nana Dasebere Amankona Diawuo II, expressed satisfaction at the initiation of the project. He expressed the hope that cocoa farming, which used to be the major economic activity of the people would be restored as well as the natural vegetation.
On his part Mr, Willem Fourie, Managing Director of Form Ghana, said the company was aware that in order to succeed it must look outward to support the restoration of forests and lands in the adjoining communities.
Present at the signing ceremony were the Omanhene of the Brekum Traditional Area, Nana Dasebre Amankoma Diawuo II, Mr Willem Fourie, Managing Director of Form Ghana, Mr Wisdom Kporngor,Minicipal Budget Analyst,Brekum Municipal Assembly among other dignitaries .
By: Mohammed Suleman