Government through the efforts of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Forestry Commission, has exceeded the 10 million seedlings target for the 2023 Green Ghana Day.
The CEO of the Forestry Commission, Mr. John Allotey, revealed that this was because some 11,530,672 seedlings have been distributed across the country so far. This number, he however indicated, exempts the four Regions of the North apart from the Upper West Region.
Mr Allotey in his submission explained that the four regions of the north including, the Northern Region, North East Region, Upper East Region and the Savannah Regions, have only done a commemorative planting as they await the rains to engage in the full blown planting exercise.
The CEO of the Forestry Commission in his presentation on the provisional results of the seedlings distributed, stated that the Ashanti Region topped the Regional target list with 137% distribution rate which equals to 3,147,306 actual seedlings distributed from an initial target of 2,300,000.
He noted that aside the Ashanti Region, the Eastern, Western North, Central, Bono, Ahafo, the Upper West and the Greater Accra Regions also exceeded their targets.
Furthermore, he explained that from an initial 50% target purported to be planted in the forest reserves, a total of 61.3% have been planted and the other 38.7% planted in homes, medians of roads and other locations.
The Forestry Commission CEO mentioned the top 5 seedlings distributed per demand, naming them as Cashew, Oil Palm, Coconut, Orange and Timber species as examples of the species most requested for.
Following this, Mr Allotey welcomed the role of the media in helping to monitor the seedlings planted during Green Ghana Day, noting that all information regarding Green Ghana is available at the District Level of Forestry Commission.
To this end, he applauded some lead private plantation companies and churches who contributed to the success of the Project, outlining the Presbyterian Church, the Church of Pentecost, the Apostlic Church, the Catholic Church and the Methodist Church as the 5 top churches. He also named Ecoplanet Bamboo West Africa, Form Ghana, Sakam Savana Co. LTD, Global Green Gold among others as examples, while commending the Muslim community, particularly the Chief Imam for their support.
Subsequently, Mr Allotey revealed that even with the number planted, there are still more seedlings available at the various pick up centers and therefore urged all interested parties to visit the nearest Forestry Commission office and get a seedling to plant.
Effective supervision of seedlings planted needed
On his part, Deputy Minister responsible for Lands and Forestry, Benito Owusu-Bio, who doubles as the National Chairman of the 2023 Green Ghana Planning Committee, called for an effective monitoring and supervision of the seedlings planted to fuel the success of the 2023 edition of government’s aggressive afforestation and reforestation program to make Ghana Green again.
Addressing the media on behalf of the Sector Minister, Samuel, A. Jinapor, during a post Green Ghana Day Press Briefing, held at the Forestry Commission Mr Owusu-Bio expressed gratitude to the efforts of all Ghanaians and residents of Ghana who participated in the Green Ghana Day planting exercise and hoped for a continued support for the subsequent years.
“After planting, the next stage is to protect and nurture the seedlings we have planted. The Ministry wishes to encourage everyone who took part in the planting exercise to nurture the seedlings planted into maturity. With a collective action, we can make Ghana Green again.”Benito Owusu-Bio
The Deputy Minister in his appreciation speech, promised that subsequently, a detailed report of the aftermath of the 2023 Green Ghana day distribution, will be made available to the public and the media.