Illegal felling in protective forest of central highlands

Tens of hectares of the Dak Doa protective forest has been destroyed in the central highland province of Giai Lai but local authorities have not yet implemented any measures to tackle the issue.

The stump of a big tree that was chopped down in Dak Doa protective forest in Giai Lai Province (Photo: SGGP)

Along both sides of the road connecting Dak Somei Commune and Ha Dong Commune in the Dak Doa District, rows of trees have been chopped down and lie piled up on the side of the mountain.

Ten wood-loggers with four chain saws were seen cutting big trees along the 1,000 square metre forest area, on the other side of the mountain. Along the track, parts of the forest have been cleared away, showing newly chopped tree stumps.

Lumberjacks were seen transporting trees from the forest to the road to saw and split into logs of woods.

Deforestation over the last two months has wiped out tens of hectares of forest cover. However, local authorities have yet to act to protect the forest.

Nguyen Son Lam, head of the forest management division in Dak Doa District said the management board of Dak Doa protective forest must be held responsible for the illegal deforestation.

Meantime, Hoang Thi Tho, deputy head of the management board of the Dak Doa protective forest said that they could not manage with only seven staff members over a 18,000 hectare forest area.

After the Tet holidays, at least 9.6 hectares of Dak Doa protective forest has been logged, according to the board.

Le Viet Pham, permanent deputy chairman of the district People’s Committee admitted to the illegal deforestation in Dak Doa forest and said relevant authorities should be held accountable.

Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai has ordered Gia Lai Province People’s Committee to inspect and implement measures to deal with the issue and report to Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung before March 28. 

By Duc Trung – Translated by Hai Mien

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