Family forest ownership takes root

LIFASI Mufalali, 56, of Sesheke district in Western Province, can hardly wait to be a proud owner of a forest. The chairperson of the local Community Resource Board (CRB) west of Sesheke, Mr Mufalali is among the people set to pioneer the cultivation of exotic and non-exotic trees in the area. Apart from his desire to own a personal forest, Mr Mufalali will also jointly own another with other people in Namatondo village. The family and communal ownership of forests along with orchards is part of the Forest Landscape Restoration (FLR) project being undertaken in Silowana Complex which covers Sesheke West and comprises Lusu, Mutemwa, Silumbu, and Kaale communities. It also covers Kabula II, Sikuka and Mwanambao in neighbouring Sioma district. The communities in Sesheke and Sioma districts represent the Village Action Groups (VAGs) under the leadership of the CRBs. “Our plan is to conserve forests. Maybe we can start selling carbon,” Mr Mufalali said. Under the project whose implementation began in January 2020 and will run up to December 2024, communities will start cultivating mukwa, teak, rosewood and mahogany. “These tree species are of high value. Under the same project, we will have orchards to grow mangos and other edible fruits,” he said. Currently, they are sensitising communities on the importance of trees. According to Mr Mufalali, fruit trees will not only help enhance nutrition in communities but will be sources of income due to the availability of markets in Sesheke and nearby Namibia. He is of the view that such activities will also keep most community members busy as CLICK TO READ MORE

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