By OTII DENIS
Kilak South Member of Parliament Gilbert Olanya has launched a tree planting drive aimed at recovering the destroyed forests due to charcoal burning.
Olanya says without resident’s participation in the tree planting exercise, Amuru district which was in the past few years free of climate change effects such as prolonged drought and famine among others, would face it rough since their environment is now exposed.
Olanya who was addressing residents of his constituency on Monday, said the drive would ensure that the destroyed trees are restored with everyone’s contribution to climate change effects remedies.
Wicere, Amuru Town Council, Omer Forest and Apar are some of the places in Amuru district where most trees have been cut.
According to Olanya, charcoal dealers that have prompted the indiscriminate cutting down of trees are ‘enemies of environment.’
Olanya promised to distribute 10,000 tree seedlings annually to his constituents for planting in order to battle climate change and other environmental challenges.
He however asked recipients of the 10,000 undisclosed tree species seedlings to handle them well, plant the trees to get value in the near future.
He further promised his voters that he would lobby for government support in ensuring tree planting as a business in entire Amuru district.
Adong Margret, a resident of Pukure parish, Amuru Sub-county applauded the initiative by the legislator.
She termed the development as ‘happening at a right time’. She expressed displeasure with the local authorities whom she accused conniving with commercial charcoal dealers to cause deforestation.
Adong alleges that the local leaders get bribes from illegal tree cutters who then work with confidence.
Uganda Forestry Working Group (UFWG) chairperson for Northern Region Onen Pope appealed to beneficiaries to always make right choices of tree species they want to plant.
He said currently, people should focus on planting trees for wealth and advised them to immediately replant trees after cutting. “To restore environment, plant at least five after you have cut one,” Onen said.