The Presbyterian University College, Ghana (PUCG) with funding from Critical Ecosystems Partnership Fund , as part of the implementation of a 16 months project...
The Presbyterian University College, Ghana (PUCG) with funding from Critical Ecosystems Partnership Fund , as part of the implementation of a 16 months project on Conservation of endangered Primate Species in three Forest Reserves in Ghana namely, Atewa, Cape three Points and Tano Forest reserves has organized a sensitization workshop for Teachers and other Educational leaders in communities around the Atewa Forest Reserve in the Eastern Region of Ghana to lead awareness on the need to conserve the forest and its wildlife species particularly primate species
The Atewa Range Forest Reserve measuring 23,663 Hectors is part of an ecosystem known as the Upper Guinea Forest ,it is rich in species hence classified as a Global Significant Biodiversity Area but the forest is under threat by human activities such as illegal mining,farming,poaching and lumbering leading to destruction of habitats and extinction of endangered species.
A research conducted by the Endangered Primate Implementation team in the Atewa Forest reserve discovered over 50,000 empty cartridges after trekking for 316 hours covering 262 kilometers of the Forest reserve .
Dr.Edward Wiafe,Project Coordinator also the Dean of the Faculty of Development Studies and Education at Presbyterian University – Ghana, said the empty cartridges identified are evidence of illegal hunting and poaching ongoing with impunity in the Atewa Forest Reserve annihilating wildlife species including endangered primate species.
“We walked about 250 kilometers in the reserve and we collected about 50,000 empty cartridges this indicate that hunting is going on uncontrolled in Atewa Forest and many hunters -those that are natives and those that are coming from elsewhere are in the reserve .The level of protection is very low “
Dr.Wiafe further estimated that ,there are between 500 to 1000 hunters operating illegally in the Atewa Forest Reserve ,a situation he describes as worrying .
“There is estimated 500 to 1000 hunters operating without regulation in the Forest and this is worrying.They are wiping out the wildlife species .So we are adding our voice to AROCHA International on the need to convert the place (Atewa Forest ) to National park where protection staff will be employed and wildlife protection exercise could go on”.
Mac Elikem Nutsuakor,a Research Assistant at KNUST wants all stakeholders to join hands to end depletion of wildlife species and destruction of habitats in Ghana .
He said flora and fauna are very critical to human survival therefore its extinction will negatively affect human life.
Cross section of the participants
At recent commemoration of World Pangolins Day on February 17,2018 at Bunso and Nsutem stretch of the Accra to Kumasi Highways in the Eastern region organized by AROCHA Ghana with support from USAID and the Wildlife Division of the Forestry commission, Joseph Yaw Oppong, Public Relations Manager of Wildlife Division of Ghana said the Division is to intensify enforcement of Wildlife Laws to protect endangered species in the country.