At long last, following legislative approval on August 22, 2017, the Grebo-Krahn National Park was formally launched over the weekend in Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County, before a record crowd, including citizens of River Gee, an FDA release has said.
The ceremony, which was overwhelmingly graced by hundreds of concerned community dwellers, as well as chiefs and elders in the area, certainly indicates Liberia’s reaffirmation to uphold biodiversity conservation efforts in the sub-region consistent with international best practices.
Speaking at the elaborate ceremony while officially launching the park for and on behalf of the Government of Liberia (GoL), FDA Managing Director C. Mike Doryen, who officially launched the project, lauded the citizens for their commitment and firm cooperation that generated the fruitful conduct of the historic event, which he said forms an important part of government’s pro-poor policy.
Doryen said the government will exert all efforts to ensure that the park regularly remains Liberia’s pride now and in the future.
According to the release, Mr. Doryen outlined the benefits the citizens stand to reap, such as job creation and other basic social and economic empowerment as a result of the establishment of the park.
He also praised and recognized the efforts of partners in the Liberian forest sector, who had over the years supported government’s dream of creating the Grebo-Krahn Park, which Doryen described as a “worthy venture as far as preserving our heritage is concerned.”
In separate statements, representatives of the collaborating partners, including GIZ/AMBERO, SCNL, WABICC, AHT/KFW, and Wild Chimpanzee Foundation (WCF), among many others, thanked the citizens for their understanding and cooperation in making the dream come true, a dream they described as a millstone for Liberia.
They pledged to always remain supportive in the effective management of the park.
Earlier the chiefs, elders and youth leaders who separately made remarks, praised government for the establishment of the park, but challenged partners to live up to their share of commitment.
They called for needed development initiatives within communities bordering the park in terms of satisfying their social and economic needs.
The superintendents of Grand Gedeh and River Gee counties made remarks, each admonishing the citizens to remain law abiding as opposed to pursuing violent means to solve problems.
Superintendent Kai Farley of Grand Gedeh County assured the citizens that he will ensure a proper representation of their interest, which will be consistent with benefits associated with the establishment of the park.
Farley also promised to ensure that the national interest attached to this park remains protected at all times in line with international best practices as far as the conservation of biodiversity is concerned.
In a related development, a similar launch of the Gola National Park is expected to take place in Tima Town,Gbarpolu County, tomorrow.
Through the 2006 National Forestry reform law, the Liberian government registered its commitment and firm political will to conserve 30 percent of its forest landscape as protected areas primarily to benefit present and future generations.
To this end, Liberia is cherished in the sub region for observing and upholding this policy thereby becoming a compliant nation in the sub-region consistent with international expectations.