The Commissioner for Forestry in Ogun State, Taiwo Oludotun, announced plans to plant a minimum of two million trees in 2024, aiming to enhance the state’s forest reserves.
Despite the state government’s initial goal of planting one million trees last year, Oludotun revealed that they exceeded the target with the assistance of development partners.
During a program at the Governor’s Office in Abeokuta, Oludotun disclosed the state’s readiness to distribute tree-planting tools to its nine forest reserves, including watering cans, wheelbarrows, and head pans. The 2024 planting season is set to begin soon, focusing on two million tree seedlings.
Ensuring an 80/90 percent survival rate for the one million trees planted in 2023 is a commitment of the agency, as explained by Oludotun.
The commissioner said, “Last year, we planned to plant one million trees but to God be the glory, we could surpass it. This year, in conjunction with our development partners and private sectors, we are targeting two million trees.
“We are preparing very well for the next planting season which starts soon. We have the planting tools like wheelbarrows, watering cans, headpans and others ready and we are equally committed to the survival of these trees while fighting to standstill all the acts of illegalities in all our forest reserves.”
The Commissioner, Taiwo Oludotun, cautioned timber contractors in J1 and J4 within the Ijebu-East Local Government Area, urging them to refrain from actions that impede the government’s forestry goals. Activities like planting cocoa in forest reserves, illegal tree cutting, transforming trees into flitches, and unauthorized allocation of lands for agriculture by enclave heads were highlighted during a meeting in Abeokuta.
Expressing gratitude for their cooperation in the past year, the Commissioner warned of the potential impounding of unregistered tractors, felling machines, and lorries found in the forest after 6:00 pm and on weekends. He encouraged contractors to establish a task force to monitor illegal occupants in all forest reserves across the state.
In response, Alhaja Oluwaranti Kazzem, speaking on behalf of her colleagues, appreciated the government’s support and assured continued cooperation in the upcoming year.