A private company’s permits to uproot Baobab trees for sale to the US have been canceled by Soipan Tuya, the Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Forestry.
An earlier decision by the Kenya Forest Service (KFS) and the National Environment Management Agency (Nema) allowing Ariba SeaWeed International to export the trees from Mtondia and Tezo in Kilifi County was revoked by Tuya in a statement released on Monday.
The statement claims that communities in Kilifi and a private enterprise agreed to remove trees, but the company started removing the plants before requesting an access authorization from NEMA.
The private company reportedly received a NEMA EIA license that was improperly granted by the county director of Environment in Kilifi County, and NEMA subsequently proceeded to court to stop the process, according to CS Tuya.
The CS ordered the KFS to suspend the movement permission that permitted the trees to be moved as a precautionary measure until the issue was resolved.
“I have a letter from NEMA canceling the EIA license they used to remove the aforementioned trees. As a result, I have immediately given KFS the go-ahead to revoke the Movement Permit that authorized the shipment of the baobab trees, pending the completion of a thorough investigation into this matter, stated CS Tuya.
The CS of Roads, Transport, and Public Works was consulted during this time, and it was decided that the trees should not be exported until the parties’ agreements were properly formalized, according to CS Tuya.
The most recent action follows President Ruto’s directive that the ministry look into the removal of the aforementioned trees.
According to President Ruto, the exercise must comply with all current laws, including the Nagoya Protocol and the Convention on Biodiversity.
In order to make sure that it complies with both the Nagoya Protocol and the Convention on Biodiversity, Ruto tweeted, “I have directed the Ministry of Environment and Forestry to investigate into the continued uprooting of Baobab trees in Kilifi County.
The government’s aim to plant 15 billion trees to help mitigate the consequences of climate change should be carried out in conjunction with the exercise, he continued.
“For Kenyans, there must be sufficient authorization and a fair benefit-sharing scheme. Additionally, the exercise needs to fit with the government’s intention to plant 15 billion trees over the next ten years “Added he.
On October 12, 2014, the Nagoya Protocol, often known as the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), which has been ratified by more than 50 nations, including the UK and the EU, entered into force.