The President Pro-tempore of the Liberian Senate, Gbezhongar Findley, has vowed to protect wetlands and eco-tourism in Liberia. He made the declaration Thursday in Marshal City, Margibi County, during the celebration of World Wetlands Day, which was locally observed here.
Pro-tempore Findley disclosed that he has begun conducting research to establish whether there exists any legal framework to promote ecotourism and to set the basis for wetlands sustenance in Liberia.
“We must begin to set that framework area, which I am prepared to take up the challenge to the Liberian Senate and the Legislature to ensure the protection of wetland to stop the land fail, the dumping of dirt, which is taking the wetland as slum areas that we can no longer afford,” he said.
Findley told the gathering and members of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and partners that Liberia is a part of the international community and must be responsible for the protection and eco-biodiversity of the wetlands.
He spoke of the need for stakeholders to change their behaviors and attitudes toward communities that are situated around wetland areas by working with community residents and local people to ensure that they understand what wetland is about.
Findley further called for management strategies, legal framework as well as a financial module to be put in place through which society will be able to receive support from more ecotourism in wetland areas.
According to him, ecotourism can be promoted through the activities based on the natural environment for the business modules, noting that when it comes to the business modules; ecotourism can be approached on an ecological standpoint on a business framework.
“Capitalists tend to have problems with these concepts many times, but in doing so, wetlands and ecotourism must take into consideration canoeing, boat riding, fishing, among others,” he reminded.
Earlier, an executive member of the Environmental Protection Agency Nathaniel Blama, observed that unsustainable tourism can affect wetlands. He however stressed a need for sustainable tourism, which he said provides opportunities for communities and the entire nation.