WWF-West Africa aids Côte d'Ivoire's Taï National Park

Posted on 02 September 2004

WWF-West Africa has donated eight bicycles and an off-road vehicle to be used by Côte d'Ivoire's national park authorities.
Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire -WWF-West Africa has donated eight bicycles and a 4X4 Toyota off-road vehicle to be used by Côte d'Ivoire's national park authorities.
"This gesture will enhance ecological monitoring and general surveillance in the park," said Dr Cissé Mamadou, the Secretary-General of Côte d'Ivoire's Environment Ministry. "A friend in need is a friend indeed," he concluded, recognizing the importance of the gift at a time when the country is going through political and socio-economic upheaval.
Located in the country's southwest on 450,000 hectares, Taï National Park is part of the Guinean Moist Forest, one of the the largest remaining tropical rain forests in West Africa. It is also home to 11 species of monkeys and the threatened pygmy hippopotamus. The park has benefited from WWF support since 1988 and remains one of the organization's flagship protected areas. The Guinean Moist Forest also falls under one of WWF's Global 200 ecoregions - a science-based global ranking of the world's most biologically outstanding habitats and the regions on which WWF concentrates its efforts.
"The government representatives promised a judicious use of the vehicle and bikes offered so as to achieve more conservation results on the ground," said Kale Gbegbe, who manages WWF-West Africa's project in the Taï National Park
The equipment was handed over in a ceremony at WWF-West Africa's office in Abidjan in the presence of the ambassadors of Germany, the Netherlands, and Switzerland, as well as senior local government officials, development agencies, and research institutions. 

For further information:
Kale Gbegbe, Project Executant, WWF Tai National Park Project, WWF-West Africa Regional Programme
Tel: +225 22 47 20 86
E-mail: gkale@wwfwafrica.org
Tai National Park is home to many species, including pygmy hippopotamus (Hexaprotodon liberiensis).
© WWF / Martin Harvey