‘Plantations are Not Forests’ Songwriter Sings from Personal Experience

A song by By Ajele Sunday, Nigerian artist. His community has suffered from land grabbing from oil palm companies.

World Rainforest Movement (WRM) interviewed Sunday about the inspiration behind “Plantations Are Not Forests”.

WRM: Can you please share a bit about what was your motivation to write the song for September 21, the International Day of Struggle against Tree Plantations?

Ajele: I am Ajele, from Ovia South West Local Government, in Edo State. Nigeria. I and my Community are victims of LAND GRABS.

Ordinarily one would have thought that when a Multinational Company such as OKOMU Oil Palm Plantation Plc is sited around your Community, that it is a sign of good things to come ,but little did we know that our problems had just began. The Company robbed us of our identity, our pride, our lands and our future, we have totally lost our means of livelihood.

The worst calamity we had was when FOUR VILLAGES were forcefully evicted, their farmlands and houses were destroyed without compensation. They came up with so many tactics to divide the people.

The Company is full of lies and deception. Now there is hunger in these Communities because the rich biodiversity which provides their means of livelihood is gone.

What prompted me into song writing is the power of music. Music has no barrier. It gets to the rich and the poor. And it cuts across nations.

The song itself is self explanatory. A PLANTATION IS NOT A FOREST. IT IS A GENOCIDE ATTACK ON NATURE, therefore, IT MUST BE DISCOURAGED.

Below the lyrics:

PLANTATIONS ARE NOT FOREST – Ajele Sunday – 2018

My brother’s
Health of mother Earth
My sister’s
Health of mother Earth is getting so critical
What are we gonna do now
This is a Clarion call
It has no exclusion I say
Am calling on everyone
Those who believe in

the sanctity of mother Earth
Come together
And let us say no no no

(Chorus)
Say no no no
Plantations are not forest
They are prodigal Children distroyin mother Earth (*3).

They came as investors
To steal away our land
With their ism’s and skisms
They enslave the people
And they put profit above human dignity

They distroy biodiversity
They distroy livelihood
Now erosion is threatening
They keep the people disunited not to speak with one voice

What about the trees
Going extinction
What of the reptiles
Taking refuge in the bush
They came like Dracula to suck the blood of the forest
No no no no no

(Repeat chorus)

Say no no no
Plantations are not forest
They are prodigal Children distroyin mother Earth(*3)

Hu. It’s getting so critical
e I ya
Crops are not forest man
O u no no no no no

(Repeat chorus)

Listen to the song

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