Locals vow to protect forest

National, Normal

The National, Thursday 30th May 2013


FOUR wards in the Sinivit local level government area of Pomio in East New Britain have joined hands to conserve their forest and protect it from outsiders.

The Arabam, Raigel, Maranagi and Sunbam wards have formed a group called Arms with the aim to protect their land and forest from outsiders and locals who intend to engage in logging and large scale agricultural activities.

With help from the Organisation for Industrial Spiritual and Cultural Advancement (Oisca) International, they will pursue conservation in their land and forest and will soon sign a memorandum of understanding to partner with Oisca for five years under its Cosmo programme.

This programme will assist Arms to conserve their forest by growing hardwood trees and engaging in other agricultural activities that involve less chemicals and other materials that are harmful to nature.

During a visit to Arabam station on Tuesday, deputy chairman of Oisca board in ENB John Rabie said he aimed to create more awareness on the importance of the environment to humans.

Rabie said that Arms owned a large portion of land in East New Britain as they were the original landowners of the land, according to history.

He said their huge portions of land were covered with forest and was believed to be the last large forest area remaining in the province after other areas were cleared  in recent years for oil palm cultivation.

The Pomio people are known for their hard work, producing food crops that are supplied to other parts of the province.