Four Policemen interdicted for illegal timber operations
The Ashanti Regional Security Council (REGSEC) has instituted a three-member committee to investigate an alleged use of Police vehicles to facilitate illegal timber operations by some Police Officers and their collaborators.
The committee, chaired by a private legal practitioner, Dr A. K. B. Anane, is also tasked to come out with the list of people involved in the deal and recommend appropriate measures to the REGSEC to forestall recurrence.
It has one month to complete its work. The setting up of the committee followed the arrest and subsequent interdiction of four Police personnel for allegedly using the official vehicle to escort illegal chain-sawn lumber for sale at the Anloga timber market in Kumasi.
Inaugurating the committee in Kumasi on Monday, Mr Sampson Kwaku Boafo, Ashanti Regional Minister, said the timber taskforce was set up in the region to check the activities of illegal chainsaw operations in order to protect the forest in the region from rapid depletion.
It was, therefore, disheartening to find out that some security personnel charged to protect the forest were rather using their official position and resources to aid crime, which they were employed to prevent, he said.
The Committee has the mandate to summon witnesses to appear before it and impound vehicles suspected to have been used in the operations. He urged members of the committee to discharge their duties without fear or favour in order to find a lasting solution to the problem.
Brigadier George Ayiku, General Officer Commanding the Northern Command, warned that the REGSEC would not tolerate any serviceman, who used his position for his personal gains instead of state security.
Other members of the committee are Major A. Y. Nsiah, Deputy Commanding Officer of the Fourth Battalion of Infantry and Superintendent Victoria Asamoah of the Manhyia Police Station.