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20.02.2006 Crime & Punishment

Twelve Forest Services Division officials interdicted

By GNA

Nkawie (Ash), Feb. 20, GNA - Twelve officials of the Forest Services Division (FSD) of the Forestry Commission (FC) in the Nkawie forest district including the District Manager and his deputy have been interdicted pending investigations into their alleged involvement in illegal activities in forest reserves. A source at the FSD in Kumasi who disclosed this to the Ghana News Agency, could, however, not give the names of the affected officials for security reasons.

The source said the affected officers were appropriately queried over their involvement in the illegal activities in the forests after which they were interdicted. The GNA was told that there had been a massive destruction of the forest reserves in the District through illegal logging with the involvement of some staff of the FSD, the police and members of the communities.

The report said about a week ago, a cargo truck carrying lumber which was being escorted by a forestry official and a policeman was stopped by a volunteer group who together with the acting District Manager gave the vehicle a hot chase and arrested it with the assistance of the military.

All efforts to reach Mr Assim Nyarko, the acting Nkawie District Forest Manager on the issue were unsuccessful as he was said to be on trek with the inspection team.

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