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SCNL Condemns Ranger’s Death At SAPO National Park

The Society for the Conversation of Nature of Liberia (SCNL) has condemned the gruesome killing of the Forestry Development Authority (FDA) Ranger, who was assigned at the SAPO National Park and expressed regrets for the incident.

The organization’s statement is in reaction to the recent demonstration by illegal miners and hunters including community members of Putu Jarwordie in Sinoe County, which resulted into the subsequent death of Friday Pyne; a forest ranger working at the SAPO National Park (SNP); a landscape set apart by the Government of Liberia in 1983 as a National Park, managed by FDA.

 

In this direction, the SCNL expresses condolences to the families of the victims, and the FDA Management. Pyne was among several others rangers deployed at the Park to prevent illicit hunters, miners and intruders from misusing the park as it has been over the years even with resettlement arrangements involving civil society, the government and the international community.

 

Accordingly, Pyne alongside other colleagues had done their utmost best to ensure sanity at the SAPO National Park, thus being vigilant in making sure that the biodiversity of the landscape is protected and that the true intent of the park is kept in line with international best practices.

 

However, SCNL as the lead national biodiversity conservation organization in Liberia, has emphasized in this public manner, that they are saddened by the murdering of Pyne and wished to call on other partners in development; especially conservation actors to challenge National Government to take more robust measures by ensuring that those involved in the killing of the forest ranger are brought to justice.

 

“Furthermore, we wish to call on the Government of Liberia to take on tougher measures in handling the issues of illicit hunters, miners and loggers that continue to pose threats to the SAPO National Park. It is reported that already more than three thousand illicit occupants are in the National Park undermining the intent and spirit for which the park was established. We think these developments coming from the National Park are troubling and have the propensity to stall the efforts of our local and international partners who have heavily invested in the redemption and management of the national reserves as part of overall development efforts,” the conservation institution noted.

 

SCNL in her statement added: “Finally, we want to use this platform to thank our international and national partners in the field of forestry; particularly conservation for the different response measures taken to date. It is hope that this position of ours will claim the attention of all actors and in particular the government.

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