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General News of Thursday, 26 August 2021

Source: rainbowradioonline.com

Illegal rosewood trade booming because criminals walk free after arrest - MP

Member of Parliament for Builsa South, Dr. Clement Apaak Member of Parliament for Builsa South, Dr. Clement Apaak

The Member of Parliament for Builsa South Dr. Clement Apaak has stated that criminals who are still engaging in the illegal rosewood trade are doing so because they easily walk away when arrested.

The MP who had consistently campaigned against rosewood trade said it is for this reason why the ban and so-called reinforced bans, including a recent total ban of export of rosewood, the illegal logging and transportation and export is still continuing.

He was reacting to the impounding of a two forty footer container trucks with registration number GN 411-14 loaded with rosewood at Diare in the Savelugu Municipality of the Northern Region by the Savelugu Municipal Police Command.

The Northern Regional Crime Officer, Supt. Bernard Baba Ananga, who confirmed the incident said the truck was impounded on August 12, 2021, by a patrol team at the Savelugu checkpoint.

The driver however bolted after the patrol team established that the truck contained rosewood.

It was also established that the woods were harvested around Yagaba Kubori in the North East Region and was being transported to Accra for export.

The case has since been handed over to the forestry commission for further investigations.

He said Ghanaians are still waiting for the outcome of the recent containers that were impounded at the Tema Port and the prosecution of those involved.

He challenged the Lands and Natural Resources Minister to take action against the illegal rosewood activities because his reputation was on the line.

“The current Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Hon. Abu Jinapor, must show that it’s not business as usual. His reputation is on the line. If Ghanaians don’t see arrests and prosecutions of those breaking the law by harvesting, transporting and exporting or attempting to export rosewood, then it would be clear the official complicity is to blame.”

Read his full statement below

These criminals have no fear because they know when arrested they will likely walk away free. Yhey know no serious investigation will be conducted because the beneficiaries in officialdom and or are connected to power will intervene. This is why since the ban and so-called reinforced bans, including a recent total ban of export of rosewood, the illegal logging and transportation and export is still continuing.

We are still waiting to see what will happen to the owners of the 5 containers impounded at the Tema port in June. So far no arrest occurred though the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources told Parliament the owners were uncovered. We are in August folks, not even an arrest. So what are the chances that anything will happen in the case of the Diare in the Savlugu District on August 12th.

The current Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Hon. Abu Jinapor, must show that it’s not business as usual. His reputation is on the line. If Ghanaians don’t see arrests and prosecutions of those breaking the law by harvesting, transporting and exporting or attempting to export rosewood, then it would be clear the official complicity is to blame.

In Solidarity!

Dr. Clement Abas Apaak
M.P, Builsa South

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