The National Water Resources Management Agency (NWRMA) in collaboration with Catholic Relief Services in Sierra Leone (CRS) and The Nature Conservancy have today handed over ten (10) motorcycles to the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF) for the purpose of protecting the Western Area peninsula rainforest.

The 10 Yamaha 4-stroke engine motorbikes are part of twenty-five (25) motorbikes procured with funds from CRS, as part of an activity within the Western Area Peninsula Water Fund (WAPWF) and they will go towards effective monitoring and patrol to prevent illegal activities within the peninsula rainforest.

The Western Area peninsula rainforest has been in danger over the years, due to illegal activities like land grabbing, stone mining, and arbitrary deforestation. This has in return hugely affected Freetown’s water situation, to a point that the city’s available water supply no longer fully caters to the present population.

This warranted President Julius Maada Bio’s call for an inter-ministerial committee on catchment protection, which comprises MDAs within the ministries of Environment, Water Resources, Lands, and Country Planning. The military was earmarked to benefit from this support due to its arduous support to the Inter-ministerial committee, in enforcing available laws and statutes.

In handing over the bikes to the Military, the Director-General of NWRMA, Junisa Bangali Esq. said water security is a major concern for many of the world’s rapidly expanding cities, which struggle to meet the water demands of their populations amid mounting challenges with environmental degradation and climate change.

“The security forces will tremendously help in protecting our water sources, thus enhance adequate water supply and prevent any activity that poses threat to the high demands of water supply.”

In response, the Military representative, Brig-General F. Alpha, Commander of the 3rd Infantry Brigade said this donation will would aid the Military‘s effort to provide adequate security for the protection of the western area peninsula forest thereby preventing people from carrying out activities that will destroy the water catchment and forest.