RAMSAR SITE 2

Nii Alarbie Gbene touring the area with his entourage

THE CHIEF of Sakumono Divisional Area, Nii Alarbie Gbene II, has branded some government agencies useless, as they have failed to protect significant state assets.

According to him, government agencies such as the Tema Development Corporation (TDC), Wildlife Division of the Forestry Commission, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA) among others, should wake up from their slumber and perform their duties.

He poured out his anger when he toured the Sakumono Ramsar Site which was seeing serious encroachment on the wetland that has virtually become a residential area and refuse dump site.

The Divisional Chief noted, ?If they have mother Ghana at heart, they should get out from their office and take stringent measures to curtail this encroachment by coming to the field to see what is happening than sitting their offices doing nothing to protect state properties,? Nii Gbene II.

He expressed dissatisfaction that the site had been subjected to unprecedented encroachment with no action from the state institutions responsible for its maintenance, despite several complaints for them to act.

Nii Gbene II therefore appealed to state authorities including the Minister of Lands, Natural Resources and Forestry and the Minister of Environment, Science and Technology to demonstrate their commitment by removing all illegal structures on the Sakumono Ramsar Site.

More than half of the 1.3 hectares of the Sakumono Ramsar Site which was backed with Legislative Instrument (L.I) Act 1659, 1988 has been sold out to private developers who have built their houses on the land, rendering some farmers on the land jobless.

The farmers expressed anger over the situation as they wielded placards reading, ?Wake up Chief Executive,? ?Sakumono Ramsar Site going,? ?Chief, let the L.I work,? ?Our farms are destroyed,? and ?the law must work.?

Some unscrupulous people have virtually turned the area into a refuse dump, collecting money from people who dump rubbish there. Allegedly, they have permission from certain key personalities at TMA who have a share in the proceeds.

The Sakumono Ramsar Site, like the Densu, Songor, Owabi Wildlife Sanctuary, Keta Lagoon Complex and Muni-Pomadze, has been reserved for migratory birds from Europe.

It was created in 1960 for the Game and Wildlife Department to protect wildlife, following an international convention that established a charter on the need to protect birds that migrate from Europe during winter.

 From Vincent Kubi, Sakumono

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