The Wildlife Resources Management Bill, 2014, which seeks to address current challenges facing Wildlife administration in Ghana, was read the second time to enable the consideration and approval of proposed amendments.
The bill will protect wildlife areas in the country and incorporate the provisions of the various International Conventions relating to wildlife which Ghana has ratified into the domestic legislation.
Alhaji Amadu Seidu, Chairman of the Committee on Lands and Forestry, said the enactment of the legislation would address the challenges currently facing the Wildlife Division to enable it manage the resources efficiently and sustainably in the country.
He stressed the need for community participation in the management of wildlife resources, emphasizing the central role to be played by traditional authorities in the identification, establishment and management of community resources.
Alhaji Seidu noted that the new management structures in the proposed legislation would give legal backing to the local communities in wildlife development and management.
“It is the expectation of the committee that the new structure will reduce cost of managing the protected areas, increase the income of people living closer to these areas as well as boost up ecotourism,” he added.
“It is worthy to note that in 1988, the country’s Environmental Action Plan identified the need to revise and update the various wildlife legislations due to the inadequacies of the existing laws such as the Wildlife Reserves Regulations 1971 LI 710 and Wildlife Conservation Regulations 1971 L.I 685,” he said.
He told members that the bill hopes to engage the private sector in the development and management of wildlife and to incorporate the provisions of the international conventions relating to wildlife that the country had ratified.
In another development, the Ghana AIDS Commission Bills 2015 was taken through its consideration stage where proposed amendments are expected to be debated and approved.
Source: Government of Ghana