Absa, KCCA restore 4.9 acres of forest cover to commemorate environment day

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Absa, KCCA restore 4.9 acres of forest cover to commemorate environment day
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Absa Bank Uganda and Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) have jointly planted 3,300 trees at KCCA’s Agricultural Resource Center, Kyanja situated on an expanse of 4.9 acres.

The tree planting was held to commemorate World Environment Day, attracting attendance from Absa and KCCA staff and members of the community.

The international day is this year focused on land restoration, desertification, and drought resilience under the theme “Our land. Our future. We are Generation Restoration.”

Speaking at the launch, KCCA’s Head of  Landscaping Unit, Isaac Mugumbule said the authority intends to continue to improve the quality of life of city residents through efforts under the Greening Kampala initiative.

“Kampala City is home to over 40% of the total national urban population and the increased population in the city has triggered excessive demand for infrastructure development directly impacting land and other environment resources inclusive of all ecologically sensitive areas. KCCA is working towards the development of a green and clean environment that befits attributes of a modern city which is climate resilient. We are grateful for the support of private sector partners such as Absa towards enhancing these efforts.”

According to KCCA, with an existing urbanisation rate of 5.5%, it is projected that the urban population in Kampala and the Greater Kampala Metropolitan area combined is likely to increase to 8 million people by 2040.

Kampala’s high rate of urbanization has also presented several challenges including loss of wetland biodiversity, destruction of habitats, deterioration of water quality, and have largely impeded natural drainage patterns of the landscape leading to frequent floods in most urban centers, including Kampala.

The tree planting activity was held under an existing partnership with Absa Bank Uganda through which the bank dedicated shs490 million focused on three areas of intervention namely, supporting environmental sustainability, skilling of women & youth, and behavioural change communication.

“As Absa, we are cognisant of the large array of societal challenges facing us including economic development, job creation, quality education and the impact of climate change.  Public and private sector collaboration can play a key role towards addressing challenges faced by our city including loss of tree cover. We have set out to plant mostly indigenous fruit trees today in alignment with our drive to build resilience and mitigate the impact of climate change in our communities,” said Edward Ocen, Director Legal and Company Secretary, Absa Bank Uganda.

According to data from KCCA, over 80% of the trees in the city are foreign tree species, resulting in low survival rate. Through this partnership, Absa will boost KCCA efforts to plant indigenous trees, especially fruit trees that have a greater chance of survival within the community.

Under the partnership, Absa is working with the city authority to enhance youth skilling with the aim of increasing youth employability and supporting job creation specifically through KCCA programs such as the Employment Services Bureau and Youth Centers and provide financial literacy to impart essential money skills to city dwellers.


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