The Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources Hon. Benito Owusu-Bio has assured that government will put in place the necessary measures to protect the Ramsar Site from encroachment.
Hon. Benito Owusu-Bio said Ghana as a signatory to the United Nation’s convention on protecting forests and Ramsar sites has an obligation to safeguard the site and preserve it for the purpose for which it was created.
The Deputy Minister told the Media after a tour of the place on Thursday, October 20, 2022 that the plan to save the land is in phases and that phase one will see to the moving out of all encroachers and fence walls erected at the site.
The second phase of the project will see the marking out and inventory of structures which falls within the perimeter.
After this inventory, the Deputy Lands Minister says his outfit will inform the public on the affected illegal structures and advice the obstructionists to vacate the area.
He warned that government will not watch unconcerned for people to encroach on the land and that the protection of the land is a visionary approach towards the prevention of a flood disaster in the near future.
“There is a flood-prone area but people have blatantly developed and encroach on it. This space is a protected area and Ghana by virtue of signing on to the Ramsar convention, it is our duty to protect for the purpose for which it was laid down”.
“This is a flood prone that is supposed to serve as a reservoir for floods from Aburi towards Accra and flow peacefully into the ocean. Phase one is to remove the fence walls of the speculators. The second phase will be marking out structures in the waterways with the inscriptions ‘to be demolished”.
“There is no building here that is affected that is habitable. All those structures are almost not habitable and they all do not have building permits,” he said.
Mr John Allotey, the Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission disclosed that previous attempts by his outfit to demolish the illegal structures have been shackled by legal actions.
He said following consultations with key stakeholders, the various legal hurdles have been removed and that clearance has been given for the commission and the Greater Accra Regional Coordinating Council to pull down the buildings and free the sites from the commission.