The Minister of the Savannah Region Hon Adam Salifu Braimah has inaugurated a Seventeen member committee charged with the responsibility of ending the menace of Logging and Charcoal burning in commercial quantities in the region.

Inaugurating the Committee at the Savannah Regional Coordinating Council in Damongo on 7th May, 2020, Hon Salifu urged members of the committee to execute their mandate without fear or favour and also make sure any person caught in the act is dealt with in accordance to the laws of the country.

The leadership of the seventeen member committee is made up of Tejepewura Saaka A. Sadick Bonyanso (I) as Chairman and Dr Musah Ibrahim Mordzeh Ekpampo as Secretary.

All Municipal and District Chief Executives have been made members and they are Mr Mustapha Mahama (DCE Central Gonja); Madam Veronica Alele Heming (DCE Bole); Mr  Mohammed Tamimu (MCE East Gonja); Mr Lawal Tamimu (DCE for Sawla-Tuna-Kalba  District); Mr Adam Eliasu Bawah (DCE North Gonja); Mr Saed Muhazu (MCE West Gonja) and Mr Abdallah Alhassan Iddi (DCE North East Gonja).
Other members of the committee include Mr Zakaria Iddi Tomlinson – (Agriculturist); Mr Saase Kwasi Baah (Regional Planning Officer) and Mr Issaka Zitor (National Commission for Civic Education) and Mr Jeremiah Seidu (Jaksally Development Organisation).
The rest are Mr Godwin Evenyor Dzokoto – (Arocha Ghana); DCOP Bediako (Savannah Regional Police Commander); Borejinkpr Habibu Muftawu (Gonjaland Youth Association) and the West Gonja Municipal Assembly Forestry Range Manager.
The Chairman of the Committee Tejepewura Saaka A. Sadick Bonyanso (I) who is also representing the traditional Authorities in the region assured his members of the full compliance of the traditional authorities in fighting illegal logging in the region since most of the members pointed accusing fingers at the Gonja Palaces as those behind the issuance of permits to the loggers.
Tejepewura Saaka Sadick said governments directives must be complied by every person including Chiefs in the country hence the ban will surely see full implementation with the traditional authorities in total support.
Dr Ekpampo Musah  Ibrahim of the University for Development Studies and Secretary to the Committees in an exclusive interview with Bole based Nkilgi FM said Savannah Region will soon loose its name if the menace of logging is not curbed. He said the name Savannah is as a result of the forest cover in the area which is fast diminishing on daily basis.

In November 2019, a nine member committee was formed by the Savannah Regional Minister to investigate the factors that militate against efforts to end illegal logging. The committee under the Chairmanship of Alhaji Sadique Bakari Byari, a former Chairman of the Lands Commission of Ghana presented its report to the Savannah Regional Minister with recommendations including the formation of a management committee in the region to end the logging menace in the newly created region.
Alhaji Nyari’s committee also recommended that considering the level of destruction of the forest cover in the region, there should be a total ban in compliance with the national directive of banning the harvesting and exportation of rosewood. Another recommendation was that charcoal burning in the region be fully regulated.
The Alhaii Nyari Committee further recommended massive afforestation in the Savannah  Region with members of the communities affected  involved in order to safeguard the land.

The committee among its recommendations  emphasized on an intensive sensitisation programme in all Districts and Municipalities of the Savannah Region that will highlight the dangers and long term environment effect of logging that include desertification, decimating of animal bird life in the region, lack of wind breakers thus causing the phenomenon of rainstorms that blow off roofs.
Source: nkilgifmonline.com/ Zion Abdul-Rauf

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