A foot for thought

Impact of cutting 50 million mahogany trees

Anna Nimiriano Editor in Chief Juba Monitor

According to the information published in the newspaper yesterday, the Government of Western Equatoria State and TODAF engineering Company signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)for a period of five years aimed at cutting 50 million mahogany trees. According to the document the project was meant for construction of state infrastructure estimated at USD 2.5 billion.

However, the project is big and needs good management; otherwise government will be in problem with the TODAFCompany and community. If it is meant for development in the state, let it not be mixed with other programmes. Are there 50 million mahogany trees, is it not going to cause disaster in the state, community and government should look in to this carefully. If it was done after government had made research that could be better for the community and government of Western Equatoria state.

What was not clear in the store was that there were no clear mechanism made between government and the community on how to supervise the implementation of the project. What will happen if the governor is changed? Is there a system set for this project within five years periodto continueeven if another governor comes inpower?

I hope the money willbe used for the project not ending in some people’s pockets. Huge money of a project like this needs a committee to be formed in the level of chiefs, TODAF Company and the government to monitor the process of cutting the trees and its implementation. In case of challenges how are they going to resolve?

People should work in a transparent manner and at the end of the project;the community will achieve the objectives of the project. There were many projects singed by the government in the name of community, at the end it ended in a bad way.

Hence, the community seemsto have trust in the new leadership, meaning that they are going to work hand in hand. Western Equatoria is known formahogany trees a long time ago. During those years of war, Sudan government was taking timber from South Sudan including mahogany from Western Equatoria state without benefiting the citizens.

May God bless us all.

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