In response to Minister Ngole Philippe Ngwesse’s public denial of the negative consequences of industrial agriculture activities around the Dja Reserve during the July 5 parliamentary session, Greenpeace’s Forest Campaigner, Sylvie Djacbou says there is solid evidence that the Dja area is witnessing a spike in activities including industrial agriculture and mining to the hydro dam.
According to her, recent satellite imagery shows deforestation near the Dja Reserve and corroborates UNESCO 2015 field report. This report, she says, raises concerns about the activities of South Cameroon Hevea’s (SudCam) plantation just a few hundred metres from the reserve.
“We further reiterate and stand by our 2016 report that SudCam has cleared close to 5,930 ha within 300 meters of the Dja Reserve’s western border. This is contributing to other threats identified by UNESCO to the Dja Reserve like wildlife poaching, the construction of the Hydro Mekin Dam in the North, the prospect of a nickel-cobalt currently owned by Geovic in the East and the development of the large SudCam rubber plantation.
“ The operations of SudCam plantation are wrought with a lot of controversies. Information about the project, concession limits, taxes due, ownership information and social investments are not available to the public. Thus for transparency, we call on the Minister of Forest and Wildlife to publish the Terms of Reference under which SudCam operates.This will shed light around the Dja Reserve and allay the fears and concern of both UNESCO and Greenpeace.