Suriname will gradually stop logging. A committee has already been established, and it is prepared with a policy proposal. At the celebration of the International Day of the Indigenous Peoples in Independence Square on Wednesday, President Chan Santokhi made this statement. The head of state believes that the current method of logging must be abandoned. He stated that sustainable logging practices are required. A new tree must be planted after a tree is cut down, according to Santokhi.
The president also favors community engagement. The community should benefit if logging is done in that area, Santokhi suggests. He also broke a lance for indigenous youth. Santokhi believes they should be given the opportunity to delve into the wood industry, so that fewer raw materials are exported in the future, but more end products. According to him, the young people should specialize in processing modern furniture, among other things. “There’s a lot more money in that,” he noted.
Santokhi also hinted that a major conference will soon be held in Suriname on traditional medicines. He explained that the indigenous people are involved, which will bring the law on traditional medicine to DNA for the first time. The head of government then indicates that it will be established by law that traditional medicines may be used. This will also provide the indigenous people with a source of income.
The government will do more for the indigenous areas. Santokhi thinks about education and production. For example, he explained that an ice cream factory has been set up in Apoera. Facilities will also be provided for a sustainable mooring jetty. The head of state also discussed the further opening up of the villages in the west of Suriname. He referred to the road that should connect Nickerie with Apoera. “The preparations have already been made. Now the section where the road is to be located is being pushed open.”
The advantage that this road will bring is of value that should not be underestimated. “In the future someone will have reached Apoera from Paramaribo within four hours. This will lead to more economic development, better sales of products and more tourists,” said the president. He said the road will be completed within a year. About the mediocre education system in the interior, the president indicates that he has an eye for this situation. According to him, the committee will have to become more aggressive in order to achieve the set goals.