Thirty-one (31) illegal miners and farmers have been arrested by the Forestry Commission (FC) over the destruction of forest reserves in the Bekwai Municipality.
Mr. George Agbenowoshi, the Bekwai Municipal Manager of the Forest Services Division (FSD) of the Commission, said these people had illegally entered, cut down portions of the forests to cultivate and dig for gold.
He added that they would be put before the court to answer for what they did.
He vowed that such activities would not be allowed to continue and that they would go to every length to protect the reserves.
Mr. Agbenowoshi was speaking at a day’s stakeholders meeting held in Bekwai to find radical new ways of doing things to ensure sustainable management of the natural resource.
It brought together, chiefs, assembly members and opinion leaders from the forest fringe communities, politicians and foresters.
He called for the people to show ownership of the forest and to be bold to flag up those out there plundering and laying it to waste.
He indicated that it was in the interest of everybody that the forest and its resources were protected.
Mr. Kwaku Kyei Baffour, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), applauded the workers of the FC for the good job they had been doing and asked that this was sustained.
Nana Ntiamoah Amankuo 11, the Bekwai Akwamuhene, underlined the need to sufficiently equip the forestry guards to effectively police the reserves to ward off encroachers.