The Nkawie District Manager of the Forest Service Division (FSD), Nana Opoku Bosompem, has called for stronger support from the District Assemblies, to stop the plunder of the forest and its resources by illegal miners.
He said the Assemblies and the traditional rulers as major stakeholders needed to get actively involved in efforts at protecting the reserves.
They should not only be interested in the revenue – royalties that come to them from timber resources in their areas of jurisdiction, but must be equally concerned about how to safeguard and preserve the trees.
This comes amid the massive destruction of the 60.23-square-kilometre Offin Forest Shelter at Ampenkro through illicit mining.
Nana Bosompem told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) after the arrest and seizure of mining equipment, including excavators, by a task force set up by the FSD to deal with the illegal activity, that mining was now posing greater danger to the forest than chainsaw operations.
One person, identified as Joseph Walker Samari, is being held by the police.
He said it was time, people especially in the forest fringe communities, took responsibility and did everything to prevent miners from entering the reserves with excavators.
The destruction of trees, water bodies and the soil, must not be allowed to continue, this would have to end.