Protecting their Natural Inheritance



Posted on 05 November 2012  | 
Samuela Naqa (extreme left) and other youth representatives made their views heard at the Macuata Natural Resource Management Strategy consultations
© WWF-South Pacific Enlarge
More than 2,000 youths of four districts in Macuata province who eke a living from the land and sea have pitched their full support behind the Natural Resource Management Strategy that aims to safeguard their interest.

A youth representative for the districts of Wailevu, Cikobia, Mali and Labasa Samuela Naqa said their only inheritance is their natural resources, assets that they will use to maintain their livelihoods.

“Many youths remain in the villages doing farming or fishing and that’s all they have to generate income that allows them access to education, health services, food and other needs,” Naqa said.

“But if such resources are not sustainably managed now, then we will be robbed of our inheritance.

“For some other ethnic groups, the culture of leaving behind a sum of money, a business or house is popularly practiced but for us our natural resource is our only inheritance.”

Naqa who is a youth worker attached with the Macuata Provincial Council said the rate of school dropouts amongst youths from the districts is high so they all return home to the village to make a living.

“For many, life on the land is a way of life and after a few years in school they return home banking on their natural resources to tide them through life.”

The NRM strategy that is in its draft stage is the result of consultations carried out by WWF South Pacific and the Macuata Provincial Council office with stakeholders that include representatives of youth groups.

A workshop, held in Labasa in August, identified the key components of the strategy that is underpinned by a vision for developments to occur but in a sustainable manner, that protects the food security and interests of resource owners.

The Macuata NRM strategy is expected to be launched next year.

Ends…
Samuela Naqa (extreme left) and other youth representatives made their views heard at the Macuata Natural Resource Management Strategy consultations
© WWF-South Pacific Enlarge

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