WES gives logging companies 21-days to register

WES gives logging companies 21-days to register
Illegal logging remains the biggest threat to deforestation. [Courtesy]

The Western Equatoria State government suspended all logging activities in the area and gave companies 21 days to register.

According to the authorities, several efforts were put in place to deal with illegal mining and logging in the state, but they are yet to bear fruit.

In a statement released yesterday, Alison Barnaba, the state minister of agriculture, forestry, and environment, ordered the suspension of all logging to allow the government to vet the companies and control the business.

He urged the companies to register and comply with the policies guiding logging.

“On January 25, 2023, the State Council of Ministers meeting No. 02/2023 resolved to suspend all legal and illegal operations (logging) until they comply with obligations,” Alison said.

The minister now wants the companies to obtain approval from both the council of ministers and the state assembly as per the resolution of the cabinet meeting.

All companies are required to declare the machines they use for logging and areas of operation, including the number of trees they want to cut.

“The period for that legalization of the document is three weeks,” Alison said.

He said the state council of ministers also agreed to send a senior conservator of forests to oversee the activities of the logging companies across the state.

“The legalisation process must begin with the state ministry of agriculture, forestry, and environment and end with the county authority,” Alison explained.

Alison ordered all the security officials at all levels in the state to implement the order, saying anyone who fails to comply will face the law.

In April 2022, the governor of Western Equatoria issued a gubernatorial order for the fresh registration of logging equipment to curb rampant illegal logging in the state.

However, the order seems to have not been adhered to by the logging companies.