The Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources in charge of Lands and Forestry, Benito Owusu-Bio, has commended the Sehwi Wiawso Forestry Commission for working tirelessly in the region to keep the issue of illegalities in the forest reserve under control.
Honorable Owusu-Bio averred that he was impressed with the activities carried out by the Commission despite the tough conditions they find themselves.
“I am highly impressed with the work that you have done here so far especially under such challenging conditions.”Benito Owusu-Bio
However, Benito Owusu-Bio disclosed that witnessing the illegal logging situation at the forest reserve has made him appreciate the seriousness of the situation and as a matter of urgency, will report to the sector Minister to come back with strict actions to curb the continuous illegal tree logging among others in the reserve.
The Deputy Minister further expressed worry about how the operators are able to transport wood out of the region. He then averred that if there are any officers helping these operators, investigations would be conducted to expose them.
Benito-Bio therefore admonished the regional security agency in Sehwi to be patriotic, urging them to work even harder to check the roads in the region and find ways to stop their means of transportation immediately.
Touching on the staff welfare issues, the Deputy Minister stated that his ministry is aware of all their concerns and the sector Minister who paid an earlier visit to the region has already started putting measures in place to ensure that their concerns are attended to.
“We have actually already started working on your welfare issues. Sector Minister has been here and you will hear very good news in the coming months”Benito Owusu-Bio
He reminded the staff of the Ministry’s plan to plant 20 million trees during the 2022 Green Ghana exercise. As the main stakeholders of this excerise, Honorable Benito Owusu-Bio urged the staff of the Commission to prepare their minds and be in readiness to work harder than they did last year.
“As the main stakeholders of Green Ghana, we are here to whip up your support and commitment towards the exercise this year. We will have to deliver and we will need your support to make this happen”Benito Owusu-Bio
FC Board Chairman saddened by illegal acts
On his part, the Chairman of the Forestry Commission Board, Tetrete Okuamoah Sekyim II, who also doubles as the Paramount Chief of the Wassa Amenfi Traditional Area, praised the Sefwi Wiawso Forestry officials, for a job well done so far. The Paramount chief said he is however sadden by the situation on the grounds.
“It is heartbreaking to see what is happening in the corridors of the region and as a matter of urgency, we must combat it”.Tetrete Okuamoah Sekyim II
The Paramount Chief called on the Board to immediately set up a meeting and strategize workable ways to resolve the issue of illegalities before they get out of hand.
Tetrete Okuamoah assured the staff that upon seeing the dangerous circumstances in which they work, he is going to ensure that their safety is always a priority to make officials feel safe as they deliver on their mandate.