The Kaduna State government has called on people to desist from cutting trees and harming rangers guarding the forest.
Deputy Director Forestry on Shelter Belt, Ministry of Environment, Malam Idris Muhammad said the government had made reforms on forestry laws and policies.
Muhammad told newsmen in Kaduna, that “the new law states that, any person who cuts down a tree in Kaduna will pay a fine of five hundred thousand Naira or be jailed for six months or punished with both.”
Malam Idris appreciated the State government for reforming laws and policies affecting forestry department, stressing that the reforms were last made in 1938.
“Government has also provided us with uniforms for easy identification. It has also created the shelter belt which was set between all boundaries of the Local government areas and some neighbouring States to prevent desertification in the State,” he stated.
Malam Idris explained further that; ”people are unaware of the fact that, every tree cut in the forest affects the lives of almost 400 ecosystem of different species including the human, this is so because the air humans inhale is released by the trees while the trees consumes the air we breath out, showing, the relationship between the humans and the forest.”
”The World rangers day is celebrated on the 31st July of every year to commemorate the fallen heroes who lost their lives in line of duty.
”It is set aside to celebrate the bravery of those on the field, as numerous rangers face challenges as they get attacked by wild animals, poachers, illegal miners, which has led to the loss of their lives,”he said.
According to him, in line with the celebration, funds are raised to be given as donation to cater for the families of these fallen heroes.
“The International Rangers Federation Headquarters which is situated in America is the custodian of the fund raised by companies, individuals, groups or foundations. In the event any ranger loses his life in the course of duty, money is being sent to cater for his family. And already, two persons benefited last year and unfortunately, we lost two members this year whose documents have been sent for processing,”he said.
However, Malam Idris lamented on lack of awareness of rangers efforts and activities.
“People do not know about rangers because they are not captured in the media, while they work tirelessly, risking their lives to ensure our heritage is protected and conserved for prosperity,” he stated.
Malam Idris therefore called on the need for enlightenment on the forestry activities, saying, ”Kaduna State accommodates the National park being the peak of conservation, but because awareness has not been created on it’s activities, many people are not aware of the significance of World celebrating the rangers day.”