The Savannah regional minister Mr Adams Braimah thanks the committee for doing a yeoman’s job and that they all know how challenging and risky the job is most especially when people see it as a threat in taking away their livelihood.
The nine member Committee inugrated by the Savannah Regional Minister Mr Braimah Adams to probe into the issues of illegal logging in the Savannah enclave has presented its report to the regional minister.
Speaking to the media the former DCE for Sawla Tuna Kalba Mr James Kipo Suweize said, the Hon Regional minister been a son of Gonja and as we are all aware of the devastating effect of illegal logging in the Savannah Region and other parts of the country the regional minister has deem it necessary to set up a committee to look into the issues of illegal logging.
He outline the steps the committee took to arrive at the report. according to him the committee went as far as the Kulor traditional area thus Yeji and the entire Savannah region, they visited districts and also engage community members chiefs and other stakeholders across the region and they have seen the devastating effects of logging on our lands and that the also came across trucks that are responsible for carrying these loggs outside the region.
He said the committee also analyzed the legal regimes and as well examined the existing laws that are governing logging activities in the country they also conducted some interviews and as well took pictures and videos of some of the scenes.
He did not forget to remind the media that the booklet report presented to the minister for now is not for public consumption and that it is only the regional minister that have the powers to give the booklet to any other person aside the committee.
The former member of parliament for the Damongo Daboya constituency Mr Sammy B Wusah briefed the media on some of the recommendations the committee made “considering the level of destruction in the forest resulting from the long period and the extent of uncontrolled logging of rosewood species in the region the total ban of the harvest and exportation of rosewood must be strict and consistent”.
He added that “in order to ensure that the necessary regulations and guidelines are put in place in accordance with the ban on rosewood logging an independent committee should be established by the honorable regional minister which include representatives from the regional coordinating Council, the gonja traditional, Council the gonjaland youth association, MMDA’s and forestry commission”
The further stated that” Operations of rosewood processing factories in Yipala, Buipe and Busunu should be properly investigated and the necessary measures enforced including closure if they have failed to comply with the necessary rules and regulations.
Then the Forestry Commission stationed at Yendi which supervises the East Gonja area should be investigated for their involvement in the logging and exportation of rosewood and other related activities around the Kulor area and should be punished if they are found culpable.
According to Mr Wusah the Committee after following the comments of people who appeared before the committee and the evidence put before them on the issues of logging and its related activities and the failure of our institutions in the implementation of laws and the absence of bylaws by our MMDA’s and other responsible institutions contributed significantly to the fertility culminating to the unlawful login of rosewood and other species in the region.
They also resolved that the is the need for the RCC and other coordinating councils, the traditional Council, the Gonjaland youth association and all concerned individuals and stakeholders both national and abroad to work collectively and conscientiously to put a stop to logging activity in the savanna region.
He concluded by saying, “the committee is however grateful and acknowledge the support of the regional minister the regional coordinating Council the district chief Executives civil Society and all active partners”.
The Savannah regional minister Mr Adams Braimah on his part thanks the committee for doing a yeoman’s job and that they all know how challenging and risky the job is most especially when people see it as a threat in taking away their livelihood.
He also observed that the committee have not been able to elaborate much on the role of our Chiefs in the logging related activities.
Mr Adams was however sad that the loggers are getting more daring that at the time that all energies are jeered toward stopping logging activities in the region, just as he is receiving the report, some loggers have been arrested in the wildlife protected area for engaging in logging activities.
He has however reiterated his full commitment in fighting the rosewood menace in the savanna region just as the president is fighting galamsey.
He then call on all and sundry to put their efforts together in order to see to the full realisation of the recommendations made by the committee.