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Opinions of Friday, 25 August 2017

Columnist: Kofi Thompson

Why Akufo-Addo must sack John Owusu Afriyie from the Forestry Commission

John Owusu Afriyie John Owusu Afriyie

When it was confirmed that it was John Owusu Afriyie, not Hon. Kokofu, who would be heading the Forestry Commission, I shed tears for Mother Ghana.

For days after that announcement I was furious that an unprincipled and cynical politician like him had been appointed to head such an important state institution playing a key role in helping Ghana to ameliorate the impact of global warming on the Ghanaian countryside.

Do our educated urban elites not realise that environmental destruction on the scale we are currently witnessing actually poses an existential threat to our nation and its people? Amazing.

I have kept on asking myself how John Owusu Afriyie could possibly head the Forestry Commission of Ghana since his appointment. The idea that a political-blackguard like him is in a position once filled by a fine and honest gentleman and world-class forester, Dr Osei Asibey, is most disconcerting. Have we sunk so low as a people? Incredible.

Now it turns out that that bloody buffoon is also continuing the egregious stupidity that those appointed to head the key public-sector organisation charged with protecting Ghana's remaining forests allowing mining in forest reserves instead of opposing it - in a nation whose forest cover is being depleted at such a frightening rate - represents. Incredible.

The question is: Do our hard-of-hearing and mostly-clueless ruling elites not realise that if they approached the biggest global tech companies such as Facebook, Google (Alphabet), Microsoft, etc., etc., for example, to neutralise some of their carbon footprints in carbon sequestration deals covering the remainder of our forests, it could earn Ghana hundreds of millions of dollars of dollars annually, in carbon credit payments to fringe-forest communities across Ghana, as well as to the Forestry Commission itself? Unbelievable.

Ditto negotiate similar regular carbon credit payments to fringe-forest communities and the Forestry Commission from oil-rich nations with massive carbon footprints such as Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Kuwait, to enable them neutralise their respective carbon footprints, too? Ebeeii - let our leaders think for once. Haaba.

It really is time members of our nation's complacent political class took note: They are actually drinking in the Last Chance Salon. Some of us are gettting sick and tired of being governed by morons like the John Owusu Afriyies - who are aiding and abetting those destroying our nation's forest cover instead of opposing them to save the remainder of our country's forest cover.

Simply put, John Owusu Afriyie is not fit to head the Forestry Commission of Ghana. For the sake of Ghana's present-day younger generations and that of their children and their children's children, he must be sacked by President Akufo-Addo immediately. Enough is enough. Haaba,