Worried by the high rate of deforestation in the state and its negative consequences, some communities in Cross River State have called for the adoption of forest governance as a way to tackle the menace.
Rising from a two-day workshop on forest governance organised by Waneledon, a non-government organisation with support from the Rainforest Rescue in Owai community in Akamkpa Local Government Area, the over 58 participants comprising chiefs, elders, representatives of various groups in Owai, noted that poor implementation of forest governance has led to food insecurity, poverty and mortality.
Secretary of the community, Mr. Mike Joseph, thanked the organiser for enlightening the community on the dangers of losing its forest. “Accountability has been the gap and I am sure we are going to close it. We have agreed to do something definitely. We are going to discuss this in the council meeting to start enforcing those laws that have been on ground.
In a related development, the women of Owai and seven other neighbouring communities affected by the revocation of their community lands for a superhighway, held a vigil to protest the non-abrogation of the gazette that established ownership of the revoked lands by Cross River State Government.
Speaking during the protest, Secretary General of Wanel-aedon Development Association, Joy Ogar stated that the reversal of 10 km on either side of the width of the superhighway by the Cross River State Government as published in a newspaper is untrue, as long as the gazette is not abrogated.