Mr Yaw Atuahene Nyako, the Northern Regional Manager of the Forest Services Division (FSD), has expressed concern about the total neglect of Savannah Woodlands.

He said the savannah woodlands has been neglected and under invested in terms of management even though it covers more than 45 per cent of Ghana’s land mass.

Mr Nyako expressed the concern in Tamale during an inaugural workshop on the activities of the Resource Management Support Centre’s satellite, of the Forestry Commission stationed in Tamale.

The program was to discuss the operational challenges within the northern sector, functions of the RSMC satellite station and interventions to address key challenges in the sector.

Mr Nyako attributed the neglect to the severe climatic conditions, unpredictable rainfall patterns and mining or sand winning that affects agricultural production in the zone.

He said wild fires and charcoal burning were some of the major drivers of deforestation and degradation in the three northern regions hence the need for more resources and support from government and other organizations to provide alternative livelihood for the people.

Mr Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, the Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, said the satellite station would help provide survey and mapping of the savanna landscapes, monitoring and verifying of carbon emissions and resource development to ensure sustainable management of the savanna woodlands.

Mr Afriyie said the satellite station is dedicated to understanding the dynamics of the ecological and socio-economic setting of the savanna zone to inform the development of enduring systems, standards and strategies for the savanna ecosystems.

Mr Salifu Saeed, the Northern Regional Minister, urged the Forestry Commission to intensify efforts of fighting the illegal destruction of water bodies and forests reserves.

He said there is also need for the Commission to embark awareness creation and enforce all the necessary laws and regulations in the management of the natural resources in the country.

Mr Saeed, however, appealed to the Forestry Commission to collaborate with other experts in the field to help identify economic trees globally that could be grown in the three northern regions to provide economic empowerment to the region.

He said if such economic trees were identified and grown in the area it would protect and improve the climatic conditions.

GNA