Villagers plant trees to help restore logged forest
KULIM: Villagers of Kampung Sungai Tengas in Terap have taken it upon themselves to replant over 200 species of trees in a forest reserve near them to restore the jungle which was badly affected by logging.
Bernama reported that Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said logging in 40ha of Gunung Bongsu Forest Reserve had polluted the village’s water supply and caused flash floods with drowning cases.
“The logging happened under the previous state government after the permanent forest reserve status was changed even though villagers protested.
“As the MP of Kulim Bandar Baru, I raised the issue to the Prime Minister and we got the logging to stop (in August),” he told reporters after participating in the replanting effort yesterday.
He said the permanent forest reserve status should have been maintain to protect the environment for future generations but due to greed it was neglected.
“Issues that affect the people are the priorities of the ministers and we are always driven to resolve societal problems,” he added.
Kampung Sungai Tengas Anti-Logging Action Committee member Suhair Mohd Shariff said the logging led to terrible floods in areas that had never flooded before.
“Two siblings drowned in a car during a flood in Kampung Sungai Kob recently,” he claimed.
He said many of the villagers relied on natural water rescources, which became turbid after the logging began.
“We are glad the logging has stopped and we took the initiative to plant trees so that the area will be restored,” he said.