Environmentalists Call For Traditional Approach To Conserve Zoka Natural Forest in Northern Uganda.

todayNovember 11, 2022

By Kei Emmanuel Duku

An unpaved muddy road, full of holes, leads from Adjumani town to Zoka Natural Forest located in Itirikwa Sub County. The road, which crosses the forest, also leads up to Apaa Land, a disputed area between Adjumani and Amuru District. From this road, you can see the giant trees like the aeschynomene, titanophylla and combretum (bush willow) trees, umbrella shaped shrubs of Zoka Forest.

In the forest, many people live off agricultural production of, for example, maize, beans, cowpea, simsim, groundnuts, millet, potatoes, cassava, and sunflowers. But farming and settlement in the forest is illegal, says the Uganda National Forest Authority.

As one keeps traveling deep inside Zoka Forest on road, traders or middlemen muscle it out on the muddy road, carrying charcoals, sugar cane and other grains to Adjumani Town and the wider region. Charcoal burning and encroachment for agriculture have destroyed 52% of the forest cover.
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This story is produced with Support of Funds from Northern Uganda Media Club (NUMC) through the Support of America Jewish World Service.

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