Fires now, major mudslides later
Please grant me space to publicly ask a few questions regarding the smoke-filled atmosphere that surrounds us every day, because I'd hate to think that I am the only one concerned about the onslaught of illegally set fires across the island.
Where is the response from civil society groups, like the ones who fought to secure the Melajo Forest Reserve and why the silence from the political sphere on the issue of illegally set fires and the destruction they cause?
Are illegal fire starters being sought to face charges by public officials? Are there investigations being made? The Agricultural Fires Act clearly indicates that permission is required from the County Fire Control Officer to light any fire other than an indoor domestic fire.
Why ask these questions? Because the wanton madness that is currently taking place surely deserves some attention. Otherwise by June when the rains come, and they will come, many people will be scrubbing the hillsides out of their homes.
There is a clear and significant relationship between the quality of vegetation cover on the hillsides and the risk of flash flooding or mud/landslides. If we don't take action now we will get a repeat of the destruction faced in 2010, and no one wants that.