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Source: kasapafmonline. com - The Minister of Environment Science, Technology and Innovation, Mahama Ayariga has revealed that he’s considering pushing for a legislation that will see Ghanaians who illegally hack down trees being prosecuted.

His statement comes a day after former President Jerry John Rawlings, criticized government for overseeing the uncontrolled felling of trees across the country. According to him, the development has worsened an already bad environmental situation caused by human activities.
Speaking at the 37 anniversary of the June 4 uprising in Accra, ex President Rawlings said the only way government and the various state agencies will get the citizenry to comply with environmental laws is to punish people for the unlawful felling of trees.

“I have watched the brutal hacking down of tress over the years especially since I left office. Trees that were planted along the Tema Motorway to Akosombo road were brutally hacked down a few months ago. Not even the traders who have decided to colonize the shoulders of our urban roads could protect these shade providing trees; nothing reflects our irresponsibility and indiscipline more than the neglect of our environment.

“Nothing reflects the poor standard and authority of a government as the environment. The corruption of the environment is the quickest way to degrade our human self worth and a government or local authority that will butcher tress or watch the degradation of its environment cannot expect people to behave responsible in other facets of their lives.”

However in an interview with Joy News, on the sidelines of an event to mark 2016, World Environment Day Mahama Ayariga stated that the legislation when it’s in effect, will to a large extent preserve the country’s forest and reduce environmental impact of the loss of trees.

“I have had discussions with the Director of Parks and Gardens and we are looking at having a legislation that empowers them first and foremost to protect trees in our own homes so that we can’t cut them without the permission of the Director of Parks and Gardens. Secondly to enable them to force us to plant trees; I’m even thinking of a legislation that says that if you don’t plant, Director of Parks and Gardens can cause the tree to be planted at your expense.”


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