The Chief Executive of Forestry Commission, Mr. John Allotey , has organized an end of year briefing to thank the Commission’s Press Corps for its support throughout the year as well as to provide the media an opportunity to be abreast with the activities of the Commission and clarify any concern they might have had.
The Deputy Chief Executive of Forestry Commission, Mr. Nyadia Sulemana Nelson , said in his welcome remarks that the purpose of the interaction was to ensure that the media gets the right information on issues relating to the Commission.
On behalf of the Minister for Lands & Natural Resources (MLNR), Hon. Samuel A. Jinapor and his Deputies, Mr. Joseph Osiakwan, Technical Director at the MLNR ,indicated that the Ministry is grateful for the opportunity to interact with the media and emphasised on the importance of that interaction. He expressed his appreciation for the dedication of the media in covering news relating to the activities of the Commission within the year. He urged the media to continue to spread the word about the negative effects of “galamsey” so as to protect the natural resources of the country.
Mr. Allotey, in delivering his speech indicated that there has been a lot of action this year. He added that he is thankful to the media for their presence and for covering the programmes of the Commission throughout the year.
The CE expressed displeasure at the violence that has been meted out to staff by poachers. He indicated that within 36 hours, 2 staff have been shot, both by poachers in the evening as they were doing their routine rounds. One was at the Shai Hills Resource Reserve and the other in the Bomfibiri Wildlife Sanctuary in the Ashanti Region. He advised the poachers and illegal loggers to stop as such attacks on the staff are uncalled for.
He also stressed on the fact that the fight against galamsey hasn’t been easy as such there was the need to fall on Chiefs and District Chief Executives in villages and districts respectively in the fight. “Most of the excavators used in galamsey activities are parked in peoples homes during the day close to the forest reserves and moved into the reserves in the evening to engage in galamsey activities” he said.
He indicated that the Board of FC intends to open 3 more zoos next year. One in Koforidua, another in Tamale and the last one in Takoradi.
The Chief Executive concluded by giving a summary of the activities of the Commission within the year and again expressed appreciation to the media for their support all throughout the year.
There was an interactive session between the media and the Executive Management Team of FC where questions from the media were answered.