Kampala - 4th July, 2018 - National Forestry Authority is pleased to introduce Mr. Tom Obong Okello as the new Executive Director who reported to duty on Monday 2nd July, 2018. He brings with him 24 years of experience and knowledge of natural resource management. After graduating with a degree in forestry and masters in environmental science, Tom joined the then Forest Department and later moved on to Uganda Wildlife Authority where he held management position for the last 15 years.
With full responsibility for the leadership and development of National Forestry Authority, Tom will play a key role in meeting the company's aggressive growth goals as well as building on the organisation's outstanding reputation.
Mr. Onyango Gershom, Chairman Board of Directors National Forestry Authority, said: “Tom’s track record, experience, and contacts in the profession are second to none and we are thrilled to have him on board. Attracting someone of Tom’s calibre into the organisation is a great endorsement of our strategy and ambition. He brings with him incredibly strong knowledge and experience which will be vital as we continue our ambitious plans to grow.
Mr. Okello said that, he joins NFA with an intolerance to illegalities and warns that he will not sit and watch the country’s precious forest resources completely destroyed by few individuals involved in illegalities. And during his tenure in office, he intends to work with Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development together with Ministry of Water and Environment in cancelling illegal land titles in CFR’s.
He also added that, “as NFA, we need to be more accountable to the general public in implementing our mandate”. He intends to partner with all stakeholders in ensuring that forest degradation and deforestation trends are reversed.
Going forward, NFA will strengthen its partnership and coordination with partners and security agencies in an effort to stop illegalities in CFR’s.
To the staff of NFA, I assure you that your welfare will be looked into but first we must work hard and be committed to our jobs so as to have a better bargain. The NFA front line staff in forest sectors will be empowered to do their work and the legal and prosecution team will be supported to help them handle all cases in courts of law.
I would like to thank government for the support they give to the environment sector. A big thank you goes to our development partners and to all Ugandans for trusting us to manage forests in a sustainable way. I would like to reassure all stakeholders of our new resolve and commitment to manage CFR’s sustainably. I appeal to all stakeholders to support NFA’s efforts to restore degraded natural forests and establish new plantations.
Members of the media, you are our partners in conservation and development. My kind appeal is that we should publish stories professionally and in a balanced way. We thank you for your support too.
I would like to take this opportunity to encourage all Ugandans to plant trees, protect and conserve forests. The next planting season is in August/September, please apply for seedlings from us and ensure it is planted. We will support you accordingly.
For more enquiries contact NFA PR Unit:
Aisha Alibhai – +256 772527106
Juliet Mubi - +256 772093372