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Aaron Kaah

The Cameroon ministry of environment and nature protection on June 17 planted over 1.7 million trees in the far north region of Cameroon as part of activities to mark the 17th edition of the day to combat desertification in Cameroon. The far north region of Cameroon is the most populated of the country with a surface area of 34000 square KM miles. Unsustainable land use systems and climates changes have made the region prone to poverty and misery. Speaking during the tree planting exercise the minister of the environment and nature protection Halle Pierre pointed out that bush fires, deforestation and grazing were the root causes of poverty in the region. The Gov’t representative called on the locals to plant trees so as to fight the encroaching Sahara desert around the Lake Chad basin home to some eight million people striving near famine conditions. The minister also underscored that plans were already envisaged to provide schools and farmer organizations with trees seedlings in the region.

The far north region of Cameroon is part of the Lake Chad basin and over the year’s unsustainable land use systems and the climate changes has put the region in to a mess. Famer’s plant too often and very densely making the soils exhausted. The encroaching sand dunes of the Sahara desert have leave food crops on the farm field like dry sticks. Many people in the region are always on the move in search of hope and water. Tensions flare as the villages tussle for water and grazing land simply because the resources are very limited. With the growing populations, life seems to be coming to a standstill. In a video produced on the far north region by Heifer international Cameroon called crying for water, the video predicted that the worst was yet to come, as only 3% of the household had access to potable water. A cholera epidemic has killed dozens of people in the region already. It is hoped that schemes like tree planting will not only mitigate the climate changes but will help repair the land on which the villagers depend on.

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