The National Forestry Authority (NFA) with support from The ‘’Jane Good All Institute” has agreed with community members to jointly conserve and protect Kangombe central forest reserve in Kagadi district.
The forest measuring 17000 hectares in Kagadi district was gazetted in 1932 for the purpose of water and soil conservation. It also stretches to Kibaale district.
The signing of the collaborative forest management plan was held in Kyesamire village in Kyesamire parish, Muhorro Sub County in Kagadi district on Thursday afternoon.
It was presided over by the Board Chairperson NFA, Dr.Eng Christopher Ebal.
According to Mr. Tom Okello the Executive Director of National Forestry Authority, out of the estimated 17000 hectares of Kagombe forest cover at least 15,000 hectares (80%) were completely degraded.
He says this resulted into persistent drought, loss of wild life, drainage of water reservoirs among others.
NFA on the other hand will have the obligation of providing tree seedlings to the community, guide them on forest management and also coordinate all activities.
James Byamukama, the Executive Director of ’Jane Good All Institute‘’ said they intend to restore 1800 hectares of the destroyed forest cover.
He asked local communities to support the drive so as to restore God’s Creation of both Natural Vegetation and Wild life.
Byamukama says that such collaborative measures are the way to go to bring the community into conservation and protection of the forests in Uganda.
Nicholas Kamukama, the Kagadi resident district commissioner – RDC welcomed the intervention of NFA and its Partners for their deliberate move towards restoring Kagogombe forest.
He warned the locals against encroaching on the central forest reserves.
The Kagadi district chairperson, Ndibwami B Yosia says that allowing communities to participate in the management of the reserves will help bring an end to the rampant illegal logging activities whereby the timber dealers pay some money to the people who aid them into the forests.
Ronald Alibankooha, one of the locals told our reporter that they encroached on Kangombe forest reserve due to lack of enough land for cultivations. He however regrets for destroying the forest saying they are facing number of challenges ranging from limited herbal medicine and rainfall.
Alibankooha is optimistic that with the NFA’s effort the forest will rejuvenate. He says that their groups are committed to tree planting with the major purpose of conservation.
The News Editor ,Reporter at Kagadi Kibaale community Radio