Cooperatives join NFA in drive to restore Uganda’s forest cover

By Benjamin Jumbe

The unprecedented loss of Uganda’s forest cover has prompted cooperatives to join the National Forestry Authority (NFA) drive to increase Uganda’s Forest Cover.

According to the forestry authority, Uganda has lost over 1.3 million hectares of forest cover in just 15 years and the country is currently experiencing the devastating effects of deforestation.

To address this, Uhuru Institute for Social Development has joined the Community Tree Planting project, one of the initiatives introduced by the NFA to restore Uganda’s forest cover.

The Institute has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the National Forest Authority, to strengthen collaboration between the institutions in environmental conservation, through forestry management.

The institute’s Chief executive Officer Leonard Okello says the drive to restore Uganda’s forest cover will be achieved faster through combined effort from individuals, communities, corporate organisations, religious institutions and the government.

Meanwhile, speaking at the signing of the MoU on Thursday, David Mununuzi, the Director for Plantations at NFA said they were extremely proud to partner with The Uhuru Institute in the field of environmental conservation.

“Such partnerships will help us to increase plant material to support the country to restore the environment and mitigate adverse effects of climate change”, Mr. Mununuzi added.

Since the cooperative week of 2016, Cooperatives have joined the cause by planting cooperative trees in 87 districts. The Uhuru Institute launched a tree planting competition dubbed “Plant-a-CoopTree” to promote commercial forestry as a viable investment option for Cooperatives.

Under this partnership, cooperatives in West Nile, Acholi, Lango, and Karamoja sub-regions have already been allocated 60,000 seedlings for Community Tree Planting.