Following the publication of a news story by ghanabusinessnews.com on the deteriorating state of the Takoradi Monkey Hill Reserve, state agencies have began moving in to salvage the forest.
The said story published on May 19, 2019 under the headline “Ghana’s abandoned Monkey Hill Reserve under threat”, brought to the fore how a small unique forest populated with monkeys in the center of Takoradi was facing survival threat due to encroachment, poaching and bad sanitary conditions.
The story has however prompted a response from the Forestry Commission (FC), the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) and the Western Region Coordinating Council (WRCC).
Barely a month after the publication, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the FC, Mr. Kwodwo Owusu Afriyie, popularly known as Sir John, led a delegation to the forest to ascertain at first-hand its condition.
Subsequently, the Executive Director of the Wildlife Division of the FC, Mr. Bernard Asamoah Boateng, has been assigned by Mr. Afriyie to draw a plan to preserve the place.
Mr. Asamoah Boateng has since visited the forest as his outfit initiates a plan to rescue the depreciating forest.
He told ghanabusinessnews.com during his visit that a survey to ascertain the current number and species of plants and animals in the forest will soon commence after which a comprehensive plan to develop it into an eco-tourism site would be executed.
Meanwhile, the Western Regional Minister, Mr. Kwabena Okyere Darko Mensah, has instructed the FC to make four vehicles available for the patrolling of the forest, starting October 2019.
He told ghanabusinessnews.com that the patrolling of the forest is an interim measure to prevent poaching of the animals.
He was hopeful that the plan to turn the place into a tourist site would be implemented without delays.
The GTA has also intensified its collaboration with the FC and WRCC to help address the problem.
The Western Regional Director of the GTA, Mr. George Nkrumah Ansere, has said his outfit is ready to fund the eco-tourism development of the area through its Tourism Development Fund once the GTA was included in the ownership of the place.
By Marlvin-James Dadzie