By Cornelius Eku Randall Outreach & Communications Officer NPAA
The National Protected Area Authority (NPAA), in collaboration with the Office of the National Security (ONS), Sierra Leone Police (SLP) has deployed forest guards in the North-West Region of the country.
The decision came about after series of stakeholder’s engagements and presentation that were sponsored by UNDP.
In his statement, the Executive Director of NPAA, Mr. Joseph Ranto Musa expressed gratitude to the various Paramount Chiefs, representatives of government and other stakeholders for the pivotal role they have played throughout the process. He also thanked them for their contributions in protecting the forest. He assured the various stakeholders that there arelots of benefits from the forest if only they continue to protect it.
Handing over the game guards to the various communities, the Executive Director Mr. Joseph Ranto Musa told the gathering that NPAA and other stakeholders have trained their children and have brought them back to their various communities to continue to protect the forest. He appealed to them to give to give their maximum support to the guards.
Speaking on behalf of the Office of the National Security (ONS), Senior Director Mr. Francis Langobah Kallie said that the relationship between NPAA and the Security Sector is very cordial, adding that as authority in the security sector, they are very pleased to support their operations. He appealed to authorities in various communities to see the game guards as their brothers and sisters, and encouraged the game guards to be mindful in carrying out their duties.
Inspector Mohamed Bah gave a statement on behalf of the Sierra Leone Police (SLP) by encouraging the Forest Guards to be respectful in carrying out their operations. He added that they have a pivotal role to play in protecting the forest. He urged them to work together with stakeholders in the security sectors.
Paramount Chiefs, representative, and all stakeholders present at the ceremony expressed their gratitude to the security sector, especially the NPAA team for recruiting their children. They appealed for regular engagements with the Forest Guards/ Game Guards.
The newly recruited Forest Guards/Game Guards were posted to the various areas including the Gbonkomaklu in Malamba, Kambia District, Kangari North and ManuntaMayossor in Tonkolili District, Loma Mountain in Falabah District and Otambakilimi National Park in Tambaka Chiefdom, Kerene District.