Translate page with Google

Project January 18, 2024

Red Gold Project: The Battle for the Soul of a Depleting Nigerian Forest Reserve


Supported by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and executed by the Ondo state government in South-West Nigeria, the Red Gold Project aims to cultivate palm oil on about 100,000 hectares of land at the Oluwa Forest Reserve (OA3A) to boost the country's production and income. In the 1960s, Nigeria used to be the largest producer of palm oil, popularly known as red oil in local parlance, but it has now gone down to become the fifth largest producer in the world.

This project examines the complicated rollout of the Red Gold Project. The land was allocated to a private company to carry out the project. About 10,000 Indigenous farmers were forced out of the forest, and their cocoa farms were destroyed. This created a conflict between the government, a private firm, and the farmers, who all wanted to control the forest for agriculture. Meanwhile, the forest reserve has endangered species, depleting and losing their natural state.