The Ghana National Fire Service and Tropenbos Ghana in collaboration with other stakeholders have launched the Fire Smart Landscape Governance Program and the 2022/2023 season anti-bushfire campaign for Atebubu-Amantin at Sanwakyi-Afefreso a high fire risk farming community in the municipality.
Under the theme “Prevention of Bushfires, Fighting Global Warming and Climate Change a Collective Responsibility of all Ghanaians” a 250-member fire volunteer group for the community was inaugurated.
Welcoming participants to the program, the municipal fire officer, DO III Majors Nourinnon underscored the importance of the community volunteer squads since they serve as the first point of call in case of fires.
To this end, he said his outfit in partnership with Tropenbos Ghana and other stakeholders is currently training more community volunteer squads in 10 other communities to aid bushfire prevention efforts in the municipality.
The Bono East regional commander of the GNFS ACFO I Roberta Aggrey Ghansen said the activities of the volunteers is backed by PNDC law 229 of 1990 warning that any act seeking to undermine their work will not be countenanced by her outfit.
She attributed 90% of fire causes to humans saying the region had recorded a total of 156 this year as at the end of October stressing the need for constant fire education.
The Project Manager of Tropenbos Ghana, Dr. Isaac Nunoo said his organization in recognition of the importance of collaboration in ensuring a fire risk-free and resilient forest and agricultural landscapes in Ghana is partnering communities and other landscape actors like GNFS, Assembly members, Traditional Authorities, Forestry Commission, the Ghana Police Service, and COCOBOD to design, and upscale the adoption of a landscape approach to effectively manage wildfires.
The Fire Smart Landscape Governance Program which hinges on collaboration, the creation of common platforms among actors, research, advocacy, and the activation of bye-laws to help in the fight against bush fires currently runs in 5 districts namely: Nkoranza south, Sefwi Wiawso, Sefwi Juaboso, Kintampo north and Atebubu-Amantin.
Nana Owusu Sakyi III Vice President of the Bono East Regional House of Chiefs graced the occasion which was chaired by Nana Ofori Yeboah I chief of Afefreso and Twafohene of the Atebubu traditional area.