By Aiga Vaisuai
APIA: 3 Feb 2011: The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MNRE) has launched a 5 year Strategic Plan for the development of the National Reserve Park at Togitogiga, Siumu.
The Plan was highlighted in the launching this week of the Ministry’s Management Plan for 2011-2015.
The Plan highlighted the basic information on the Parks environment status, as well as setting out “management issues to the park’s natural amenities and facilities.”
“This Plan highlights what needs to be maintained and improved to make sure that people will support the functions of a National Park to cater for the needs of its visitors,” said Faumuina Liuga, the Minister for MNRE.
He said that the plan is to “articulate the issues to arising within the Park to make sure that protection and conservation of the integrity of the park is achieved.”
A series of ecosystem surveys have already been done with financial assistance from the JICA/MNRE Project for Enhancing Management capacity of the National Parks and Reserves of Samoa.
The current status of the Park makes a significant contribution to raising environmental awareness of environmental problems such as land degradation, destruction of wildlife habitats and ecosystems, most importantly the impact of climate change.
The Plan is also strengthened through “the enforcement of relevant legislations and working together with the neighboring communities.”
The Minister of the MNRE acknowledges all the stakeholders who contributed to the preparation of the Management Plan for the Le Pupu Pu’e National Park in Togitogiga.
The launch was part of the celebration of World Wetlands Day at the To’oa Salamasina Hall. The celebration saw the participation of key stakeholders as well as a chance to explain to the young generations the importance of the environment to Samoa and to any other country.
“We try to tell the people the importance of the wetlands in Samoa,” said Moafanua Tolusina Pouli – the Principal Forestry Research & Development Officer.
“This project is for the people and we have to educate our community on the importance of the environment,” he said.
The Plan for Togitogiga is to ensure the natural environment is maintained such as its Geology, Landforms, Soils and Catchments and the Flora and Fauna.