By Fatima Muraina
The Ondo state Ministry of Natural Resources has assured of its commitment to increase its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) to N2 billion annually in the next five years.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Natural Resources, Mr Lawal Fatai gave the target in a chat with The Hope in Akure.
Fatai said the support from foreign investors on tree planting will begin to yield fruits within the next five years when they would start maturing and the proceeds will be added to the state revenue which would increase the ministry’s IGR.
Expressing that the present annual IGR is between N700 and N900million, Fatai noted that the amount would increase as soon as the hybrid economic trees planted by private investors get matured for felling.
He said government had engaged the services of the private investors to plant over six million hybrid economic trees in the past three years at Ore, Ofosu, Ondo and some other forest reserve areas across the state.
He stressed that the policy of government on reserve areas accommodates every interested people to do business legitimately by getting necessary paper approvals.
According to the Governor’s aide, such approval is extended to flinching at difficult terrains which is not transportable and where such area is allocated to somebody.
“Flinching is illegal, but there is a way it is done to legalise it, instead of destroying the farms to gain access to the location of the trees, government approved flinching in unmotorable roads, where there are obstacles like rocks, stones or hills and to give such allocation, you come to the ministry to pay and get approval to flitch at the reserve areas”, he said.