The manner in which illegal logging is taking place in the country at large and in the Bo District in particular, is very alarming, especially when one takes into consideration the attendant devastating environmental ramifications on lives and property around the country; it is in view of this that the District Forest Officer (DFO) in the Bo District, Joseph Musa, has intensified what he has called “the war against illegal logging” in the district, by institution high fines and or seizing the equipment of defaulters. He has imposed a registration fee for logging equipment such as the Power Saw to One Million Leones whiles raising the cost for loggers to Five Million Leones.
Government and environmentalists have issued several warnings against illegal and reckless logging but the fact remains that it is still ongoing and has spread wide and far across the country.
To ensure that his new anti-logging strategy works, Mr. Musa has used his series of radio-talk show programmes to send stern warning to perpetuators that if they are caught any time, they would face the full consequences of the law.”
He has been backing his warnings with regular spot checks of the forests within his area of responsibility accompanied by his forest officers.
His vigilance and proactive approach to the issue paid dividend when last week he arrested one logger at Sembehun 17 and a number of STIHL 070 power saw machines were confiscated. DFO Musa is insisting he will not release the machines until they are officially licensed.
In a snap interview with this reporter, Mr. Musa reaffirmed his determination not to relent or budge from his focus of ensuring that illegal logging becomes history in that part of Sierra Leone.
© Copyright by Awareness Times
Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.