By Ange de la Victoire DUSABEMUNGU
Rwanda’s Minister of Environment, Dr. Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya has warned the northern Province citizens to redouble their efforts in the protection of Environment if they are to avoid future calamities that may wash away a big portion of their arable land.
The call was made on 25th March, 2023 during the community meeting that was held in Bwisige Sector, Rutoma Cell in Gicumbi District on 25th March 2023.
The event was organized as part of the celebration of the International Day of Forests, Water and World Meteorological Day during which the Ministry of Environment and various partners participated in a community work that planted 8150 trees on 3.5 Ha, in addition to the cleaning of rainwater channels among other activities.
Speaking to the community, the Minister of Environment Dr. Mujawamariya Jeanne d’Arc, reminded the northern province citizens to participate more in various environmental conservation programs, including planting forests, planting agroforestry species, avoiding the premature harvesting of forests and promote the use of Energy saving cooking stoves.
Minister Mujawamariya warned that if there is no active participation in the preservation of the environment, the future will be catastrophic where a percentage of the land between 35 and 71 hectares in the Northern Province will be washed away in a short period of time.
The Minister of the Environment, Dr. Mujawamariya, said that reforestation is one of the pillars of the fight against erosion, returning to its dangers.
“There is a danger that awaits us, erosion. If we are not careful, this district of Gicumbi alone risks losing 47% of its arable land, and you see what a disaster that is,” said Minister Mujawamariya.
She thus seized the opportunity to ask the population to redouble their efforts to fight against erosion, using the appropriate methods. She cited anti-erosion terraces, planting forests and many others.
“Everything is connected to nature, from our forests and water to our climate. We are facing the triple planetary crisis of pollution, the climate crisis and the loss of biodiversity. The solution lies in development that is resilient to the environment and climate, hence the interdependence of these three elements, water, forest and climate,” said the Minister of the Environment, Dr Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya
The Minister indicated that initiatives have already been undertaken in this context, as in the Green Gicumbi project. She asked that they serve as an example and influence throughout the northern province of the country.
The Governor of the Northern Province, Nyirarugero Dancille said that some progress has been made in the field of environmental protection in this province, but also that there is still a long way to go mainly due to the nature of this province which is characterized by high mountains.
She requested the people to participate in planting new trees, fighting erosion by digging rain water channels to avoid land flooding and fixing the roofs of the houses and other activities aimed at fighting and preventing disasters.