HomeGeneral NewsGovt urged to withdraw permit issued company to access forest reserves

Govt urged to withdraw permit issued company to access forest reserves

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Achimota Forest

A forest conservation organisation, Tropenbos is calling on the government to reverse its permit issued to a timber milling company, John Bitar Company to carry out timber production in some forest reserves.

The permit, issued by the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, allows the milling company to access over 120 square kilometers of forest reserves in Subri and Krokosua in the Western Region.

In a letter sighted by JoyNews, the Lands and Natural Resources Ministry instructed the Forestry Commission to grant a Timber Utilisation Contract to Messrs John Bitar Company Limited for partial coverage in Globally Significant Biodiversity areas in the Subri and Krokosua forest reserves after petitioning the Lands Ministry to help salvage the company from possible collapse and save 2,000 jobs.

But the Deputy Director of Tropenbos, Boakye Twumasi Ankrah stated that Messrs John Bitar Company is just one of many companies in the timber industry seeking access to forest reserves.

“Once this happens, it is going to open the floodgates for other timber companies to also apply to enter protected areas which cannot be accepted.”

According to Mr. Ankrah, the government’s decision to grant the permit may violate international treaties and agreements that Ghana has signed, which place restrictions on the use of forest reserves.

“I think that the Minister should take a second look at the letter and probably withdraw it with immediate effect because it is against the tenets of sustainability and conservation.”


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