Ogun state government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a major cement plant, Lafarge Africa PLC for the re-afforestation of the state’s degraded forest reserves.
Forestry Commissioner, Chief Kolwole Lawal who made this known while receiving in his office members of the agriculture and forestry committee of the state house of assembly who are assessing the performance of the ministry’s 2016 budget.
The Commissioner who was represented by the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary,Engineer Lanre Bisiriyu said the MoU with Larfarge would also involve some international development partners in the afforestation project.
Lawal said the ministry also last April renewed concession arrangement with Omo Wood Industry for another 10 years to improve the state government revenue.
Lawal said the ministry generated N103.7 million revenue as at last July out of the N275 million revenue projected for the fiscal year, blaming the shortfall on timber contractors and cocoa farmers who destroyed over 20,000 hectares of trees in the state’s plantations.
He said the ministry intensified effort against illegal felling of trees, led to the arrest of over 70 illegal operators with more than N10 million recovered from them in the past seven months.
The commissioner who said only N20million has been released out of the N1.75billion approved for the ministry’s capital projects.