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2012 National Tree Planting Campaign Launched 

By Yerima Kini Nsom

CameroonPostline.com — Forestry and Wildlife Minister of, MINFOF, Philip Ngole Ngwese, has launched the 2012 national tree planting campaign in Yaounde. The campaign will run under the theme “To plant a tree is to contribute to the promotion of a green economy.”

During the ceremony at the Yaounde Mont Febe Hotel on July 19, financial assistance worth FCFA 875 million was given out to a number of councils and localities, NGOs and associations working in collaboration with the Circle of Friends of Cameroon, CERAC, and with the Ministry of Women Empowerment and the Family.

One of such projects, it should be recalled, was launched for the first time in 2006 with local councils, NGOs and associations, common initiative groups and local communities receiving FCFA 1 million to FCFA 25 million each as assistance from the Government for the sustainable management of the forest.

This year’s edition is taking place against a background of how to promote the green economy through the notion of planting trees. A total sum of FCFA 525 million and materials worth FCFA 350 million were handed over to the main actors in this year’s edition of the campaign. The Minister remarked that measures are being reinforced to safeguard the country’s forestry sector from all forms of illegal exploitation.

Speaking in Yaounde a day before, while chairing the closing of the second session of the joint monitoring board of the voluntary partnership agreement between Cameroon and the European Union, Ngole Ngwese emphasised on prospects in the agreement aimed at getting stakeholders in the forestry sector to respect the regulations in force, including re-afforestation.

MINFOF officials corroborated that to reach the target this year, the project is being decentralised to involve local authorities for better results, as they intend to follow up and ensure that the trees are effectively planted, as well as, to follow up with their maintenance.

For the exercise to be effective on the field, the Ministry supported the main beneficiaries, that is, 82 councils and 126 NGOs with FCFA 525 million, to plant and preserve trees for seven years. Of the common initiative groups concerned, 13 are backed by the Ministry of Women Empowerment and the Family and 16 by CERAC.

The beneficiaries, in collaboration with CERAC and the Ministry of Women Empowerment and the Family, as well as the 10 regional delegations of MINFOF, are all expected to contribute to the planting of some 800.000 trees over a surface area of close to 2.000 hectares. With the low realisation rate recorded in 2010, Ngole Ngwese stressed the need for each actor to help Cameroon in the struggle to promote the green economy through tree planting.

First published in The Post print edition no. 01361

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