The Minister of Environment, Professor Foday Jaward, has called on every Sierra Leonean to take positive action that will help protect the environment and save communities from climate change disasters including flooding, mudslides and others.
He made the call whilst delivering a keynote statement last Thursday at the Orange Sierra Leone’s launch of the Environmental Health and Safety Week in Freetown, on the theme ‘Taking sustainable steps to reduce our carbon footprint.
He said his ministry has done a lot in putting policies in place for the protection of the environment, and that they have also reviewed all obsolete environmental related Acts with deterrent punishment of environmental lawbreakers.
He said the ministry has worked together with all other agencies dealing with environmental issues to review all environmental laws because they learnt that the penalty in those laws are not commensurable to the crime.
He further states that Acts including the Forestry Act of 1988 and the Wildlife Act of 1972 had been reviewed, disclosing that the Wildlife Act now has a deterrent punishment of NLe25, 000 for anyone that will hunt and kill an antelope in the protected forests across the country.
He also noted that they have also established an environmental court for speedy trial of environmental cases.
He said the Environmental Health and Safety Bill is the law, regulations and effort everybody make to ensure that their employees are safe, the general public is safe and the environment is safe as well.
He disclosed that they have planted over 2,800 trees out of the 5,000 trees they targeted to plant and the planting of trees across the country.