An expert at the University of Ibadan, Oya state, Prof. Labode Popoola, has urged the Federal Government to convene a National Forest and Biodiversity dialogue to fashion out a more holistic approach to sustainable forest management.
Labode, a Professor of Forest Economics in the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, said this at an inaugural lecture he delivered at the Trenchard Hall of the University.
In the lecture entitled “Imagine a Planet without Forest”, Popoola stressed the urgent need for government to undertake and assessment of forest and biodiversity resources of the country to establish their status.
According to him, one cannot adequately manage what one does not know, or have control over, calling for a diligent implementation of the Presidential Initiative on Afforestation (PIA).
“If the PIA is implemented sincerely, it will fast track the recovery of the sector from its current parlous state,” he said.
He said that in spite of the imperfection and anomaly associated with the implementation of the initiative, 40 million seedlings were raised and distributed in the first phase of the programme.
The professor also said that the initiative should also be given the desired impetus and sustained.
He, however, identified the challenges hindering sustainable forest management to include poor governance, inappropriate and conflicting policies, inadequate institutional capacity, inappropriate technology, low levels of awareness and inadequate stakeholder participation.(NAN)