CABINDA – The Ministry of Environment in ANGOLA has pledged to fight poaching and illegal logging activities in order to protect animal and plant species in the country.

Environment Minister PAULA FRANCISCO COELHO has given an interview to the national news agency, ANGOP in the northern region of CABINDA.

Angolan Environment Minister Paula Francisco Coelho

She has visited BUCO-ZAU and BELIZE municipalities in the region to explain a program to recruit former military personnel to protect fauna and flora at MAIOMBE National Park.

MAIOMBE National Park Manager JOSÉ MARIA BIZI says the nature reserve needs 65 more officers because the current 15 are failing to manage the 193-THOUSAND hectares.

To mitigate the shortage of staff, the administration now relies on members of the public who volunteer information on poaching and illegal logging, as well as other evils against nature.

The move comes after the AFRICA Sustainable Conservation publication in JANUARY claimed illegal logging of primary forests continued without any real control, with the agreement of corrupt officials.

It alleged columns of trucks belonging to CHINESE companies carried hundreds of cubic metres of wood to ANGOLAN ports, bound for ASIA.

It said there was lack of information on HUAMBO, BENGUELA, BIÉ and other regions regarding forestry resources, which have been inaccessible for 40 years due to armed conflict.

The publication called on the authorities in ANGOLA to end the problem, saying no country should allow indiscriminate plunder of its natural resources for export as raw materials./Sabanews/cam

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