By Ange de la Victoire DUSABEMUNGU
The Ministry of Environment in Rwanda has announced that every household is required to plant a minimum of three trees during the upcoming tree planting season. A total of approximately 63 million trees are expected to be planted for the 2023/2024 season, commencing in October.
Every year, as a customary practice, Rwanda plants trees and forests in general. This is done with the purpose of consistently expanding the forested areas and preserving them.
According to Dr. Concorde NSENGUMUREMYI,the Director General of the Rwanda Forestry Authority, “The tree seedlings prepared for the year 2023/2024 amount to 62,843,695. Out of this total, 34% are prepared through government projects, 43% through non-government projects, and 23% are being prepared by private companies and individuals.”
Among the species that will be planted are native and exotic trees, which include forest trees, agroforestry trees, fruit trees, bamboo, and ornamental trees.
He explains that “This year, the trees will be planted between October and December 2023. The work of preparing seedlings will continue so that they can be planted again from the end of March to the beginning of May 2024, depending on the weather conditions.”
As part of the tree planting program this season, the Ministry will work with various partners through the collaborative projects such as GREEN AMAYAGA, GREEN GICUMBI, AREECA, COMBIO, and TREPA among others.
There are also non-governmental projects such as ARCOS, OAF, ICRAF, ENABEL, private companies like the tea companies, state forestry management companies, banks, Telecom companies, Ministries and line agencies such as MOE/RFA, MININTER/RCS, RNP, MINISANTE, MINAGRI/RAB, different clubs such as the ONE SHOT ONE TREE GREEN campaign, and the general public.
Amplified Call by the Minister
According to Dr. Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya, the Minister of Environment, in light of the impacts of climate change and the ongoing global issues associated with deforestation, it is crucial for everyone to actively participate in the current tree planting season. As part of this effort, villages will engage in a friendly competition to plant trees, and each household will be obligated to plant a minimum of three trees.
“As you already know, we are planning to plant approximately 63 million seedlings this tree planting season. We kindly request everyone’s participation to ensure that every household plants a minimum of three trees. Additionally, we urge villages to maximize their efforts in planting and implement measures to enhance the survival rate of each planted tree. Every seedling is valuable to us, and we appreciate your cooperation in this endeavor.” Minister Mujawamariya said.
In response to the TOP AFRICA NEWS regarding the availability of seedlings, Dr. Mujawamariah has confirmed that they are indeed available and prepared for distribution. She stated, “Seeds are readily available. We have gathered information from various partners, such as One Acre Fund (Tubura), our partners in the TREPA project, Green Amayaga, Green Gicumbi, and others.”
The Minister emphasized that Rwandans should learn from the ongoing disasters in Libya, where thousands of lives have been lost due to climate-related effects.
She stated that it is important for every Rwandan to understand that climate change is a collective concern.
Additionally, Minister Mujawamariya urged everyone to adhere to effective land use practices, follow the housing master plan to prevent disasters, and plant trees around their surroundings as windbreakers to protect their homes.