The First Vice President has asked Jubek state authorities to arraign in court suspects behind illegal logging in the state.
In June this year, Jubek state government seized three trucks that were trying to smuggle teak to Uganda.
However in July, Jubek state government released the three trucks, saying the truck drivers were innocent.
The release, according to an official who spoke to Eye Radio but requested anonymity, was ordered by the Jubek state governor, Augustino Jadalla.
Speaking during the launch of the 2015 National Forest Policy in Juba earlier today, Taban Deng Gai said..
“It’s timely to protect this forest policy to guide the development of forestry sector. The broad objectives of forestry policy is to provide continuous guidance to all South Sudanese on the sustainable management of forests. The issues to be addressed by implementing this policy are forest degradation and deforestation caused by rampant illegal cutting down of trees. Just like the case that was stated by the undersecretary of Jubek state, if the papers were forged in the name of director, then the person who was caught with logs should be arraigned in court.”
The United Nations Environment Program or UNEP estimated in 2007 that the teak, if sustainably harvested, could generate up to $50 million a year in export revenue for South Sudan.
But according to the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, teak exports currently bring the country only about $1 million to $2 million a year due to illegal logging.
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