Story: Kwame Asare Boadu, Kumasi
13/03/08MEMBERS of the Ashanti Regional branch of the Woodworkers Association of Ghana (WAG) have decided to embark on afforestation to address the threat of unavailability of lumber for making furniture on the local market.
Fears of shortage of lumber on the local market in the not too distant future have been lingering on the minds of woodworkers operating in the region.
Consequently, the association has for some time now been devising ways to counter the threat before their business collapses.
A survey carried out by the association as part of its advocacy programme sponsored by the BUSAC Fund, recommended that the small-scale furniture makers must go into forest plantation as a long-term solution to the problem of wood shortage.
At a news conference in Kumasi, the association appealed to the Timber Industry Development Division (TIDD) of the Forestry Commission (FC) to come up with a programme that would feed their members with the necessary information on plantation development to enable them to meet their objective.
Addressing journalists, the Regional Chairman of the association, Mr Reynolds A. Debrah, said they had officially submitted their recommendations to the TIDD and expressed the hope that something positive would come up.
He said they were consulting with the FC for parts of the degraded forests to be allocated to them for the plantation projects.
Mr Debrah said the association was very concerned about their future, stressing that any shortage of wood would collapse their industry.
He stressed the need for the association to find ways of generating greater interest and support,“ so that we all can contribute our quota in the regeneration of our depleted forests”.
The regional chairman said the association decided to encourage individual members to undertake the project on personal basis since it was possible to arrange for allocation of part of the forest plantations.
Mr Debrah also appealed to the government to speed up work on the establishment of the Sokoban Wood Village for carpenters at Anloga Junction to move there to enable the reconstruction of the Kumasi Ring Road to kick off.