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Torit State to end Magwi illegal logging

By: Kabaka Quintous

Torit State delegation is in greater Magwi to end the on-going illegal logging in the area.

Akile Maridi Cypriano, the State Minister of Agriculture and Forestry and the head of the delegation said the team has been divided into three zones A, B and C to complete assessment at the shortest possible time.

The visit came after the community called for government intervention to rescue the forest from the illegal loggers who are aided by local chiefs.

On Tuesday, Torit State government launched Operation Safe Our Forest (OSOFO), a government initiative to end illegal logging in the area.

Akille said the level of forest destruction in greater Magwi was “beyond imagination.”

“Currently I am in Zone A, comprising of Ayaci and Magwi Counties, In fact the level of destruction is alarming. These people have destroyed our forest regardless of the impact that will come in future, we have moved in Ayaci and we have impounded timbers in Ayaci particularly in Lerwa, Paluwar Obbo and the owners have escaped to Uganda upon hearing that I am here,” minister Akille said.

He said they notified the authorities at the border to arrest any truck ferrying forest products to Uganda.

“We also went to as far as to the border and we had a discussion with authorities at the border point and we have given them instructions that any truck crossing the border with any forest products should not pass but should be arrested,” he added.

Akille added that they were collecting information and papers documentations from the individuals who might have had local agreement with the community or chiefs.

“We have been sensitizing them and that is the reason of my coming here. This is natural forest and most of these trees have lived for long as such nobody will come and just destroy our forest that will affect our environment,” he stressed.

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