Sunday, October 20, 2019

Fire Consumes Nyambai Forest

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By Nelson Manneh

Part of ‘Nyambai’ Forest was on Thursday, 7th March 2019, consumed by fire.

Eye witnesses say the fire began around 3 pm. The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained.

Speaking to Foroyaa, one Yorro Sowe who works at an abattoir just beside the forest, said they saw the forest on fire and went out to see how they can put it off.

“Beside the Forest, there are some poles that are placed there by one private company. We saw the fire coming towards those poles then we fetch some water to help in putting the fire off,” he said.

Mr. Sowe added that he cannot explain how the fire started but he assumes it might have been caused by the people who passed through the forest. He said the Forest has lots of dry leaves and grasses and even a ‘cigarette’ when thrown could cause fire.

Sowe narrated that the ‘Nyambai’ Forest was among the thickest forests in Brikama in those days but as the town continues to grow, the inhabitants continue to encroach into the forest for settlement. He added that people now allow their cattle to graze in the Forest.

One Naranding Sanneh told Foroyaa that she resides in Jambur but fetches wood at the Forest.

“The gmelina trees were cut down and there were many dried leaves on the ground, I am sure even when a ‘cigarette’ that has fire is thrown there, it could cause fire because of the dry leaves,” she noted.

Nyambai Forest in ashes, Pic: Abdoulie Fatty

Mrs. Sanneh indicated that the Forest continues to lose its greenish appearance because of fire and cutting down of trees. She held that the Forest should be reserved for the future generation.

The flames that devastated the forest, Pic: Abdoulie Fatty

At the time of going to  press, Foroyaa tried to contact the Public Relation Office (PRO) of the Fire and Rescue Services, but he was out of reach.

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