Sefwi Wiwaso (W/N), Nov 31, GNA- Media practitioners in Ghana have been encouraged to increase their reportage on the forest sector and lead the fight against deforestation in the country.
This, according to Mr. Boakye Twumasi-Ankrah, Project Coordinator of Tropenbos Ghana was crucial in the efforts to maintain the forest reserves of the country.
Addressing participants at a sensitization workshop for media practitioners in the Western North Region, Mr. Twumasi-Ankrah stressed the need to protect the forest reserves saying, it helped in addressing issues of climate change which impacted heavily on farming especially cocoa production.
“The media must play a role in fighting the illegal operators of the forest reserve by reporting them to the appropriate authorities for their arrest and prosecution”, he said
The workshop which sought to share and strengthen the capacity of local media practitioners on tropical issues in the natural sectors exposed the journalists to the policy management and issues related to forest and associated resources in the country.
It was also to update the journalists on major issues, its implications and requisite collaborative actions that needed to be perused to drive changes and optimum benefits flow to all stakeholders especially venerable groups.
Mr. Twumasi-Ankrah underscored the need to address the challenges in the forest communities to improve on incomes and reduced dependence rate on forest reserve.
Subsequently, he said community- based focal people would be trained to ensure proper used of the natural resources especially the forest.
He noted that the forest was a means of creating wealth or reducing poverty and as such contributed to national development.
“The forest contributes to the development of the country through foreign exchange earnings from commercial timber and also to some extend wildlife and direct employment as several farmers depend heavily on the forest for their livelihood ».
He said Tropenbos Ghana would continue to intensify its education and sensitization programme to reach many forest reserved communities in the country.
Nana Kwasi Atta Agyeman, who spoke on behalf of the media, commended Tropenbos Ghana for the education and called for it to be extended to cover more forest communities in the country.