ELIZABETH CHATUVELA, Lusaka
WESTERN Province deputy permanent secretary Bernard Chomba says Government has continued losing huge sums of money through illegal timber trade due to porous border posts in the area.
Mr Chomba said in an interview yesterday that timber is headed for extinction as most of the illegal traders are now taking advantage of the porous border areas to engage in illegal trade.
He urged security wings to be on the look-out and help curb the retrogressive vice.
“Western Province is one of the areas blessed with timber, and illegal traders have now moved here because of the porous borders as well as lack of security personnel to check the movement of the log,” he said.
Mr Chomba called on the forestry department in the area to ensure people who have been awarded concession licences adhere to the stipulated regulations.
He, most timber traders with concession licences do not re-plant the trees after harvesting.
Meanwhile, Mr Chomba said Government has set aside K470,000 for the restocking of Shangombo State Ranch with exotic and indigenous breads.
Mr Chomba said the ranch will be fully-fledged at the end of this year.
He also said Government is in the process of putting up measures to protect cattle farmers who have over the years been exploited by beef companies.
Mr Chomba said the Litunga of the Lozi people, Lubosi imwiko, has offered to sell his exotic breeds to the local farmers to improve the breed in the area to supplement Government’s efforts of developing the livestock sector.