Police in Gasabo District has warned local residents against acts of deforestation, which lead to environmental degradation and negatively affects the community.
The warning comes in a wake of cases of tree felling in Jali gazetted forest leading to deforestation.
According to Chief Inspector of Police (CIP) Marie-Gorette Umutesi, the Police spokesperson for Central region, seven people were arrested cutting trees in that gazetted forest in the last one week.
“In two separate operations conducted in the last one week, Police and local leaders arrested seven people, who were found cutting trees in Jari forest, including three arrested Saturday,” said CIP Umutesi.
“These are continuous operations against environmental degradation and to protect Jali forest.”
CIP Umutesi said that such environmental crimes are a major drive to climatic change and loss of habitat, which poses a threat to species.
Trees are mainly cut for timber, charcoal and construction.
“If people want to boost their business, they should do it in the most legal and appropriate way. Forests are protected for environmental reasons and anyone that encroach es on them will be arrested to face justice,” CIP Umutesi warned.
Charcoal burning, illegal timber business and bush burning are some of the activities that endanger the environment in the area.
Environmental experts say that the world’s forests, swamps, plains, lakes, and other habitats continue to disappear due to human activities including charcoal burning, agriculture, housing, roads, timber, and more.
The spokesperson further urged people to plant as many trees as possible and report people, who destroy the forest.
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