2017 ANNUAL REPORT
Our focus in 2017 was on advocacy campaign against mining in forest reserves. A review of the guidelines for mining in forest reserves was initiated by the Chamber of Mines through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the intention of passing the guidelines into policy and law. Kasa facilitated a CSOs’ discussion on the issue in May 2017 which enabled CSOs including Civic Response and Wacam to make inputs, analysing why the guidelines could not be passed into law.
SIGNED AIDE MEMOIRE_TECHNICAL SESSION OF JMRM
A technical session of the Joint Monitoring and Review Mechanism (JMRM) to facilitate the implementation of the Forest Law Enforcement and Trade (FLEGT) Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) between Ghana and the European Union (EU) took place in Accra on 17th July, 2018. The session discussed progress on key aspects of the VPA implementation.
INVESTIGATE GALAMSEY ALLEGATIONS AGAINST FC CEO
Forest Watch Ghana observes with great concern recent allegations about involvement of CEO of the Forestry Commission of Ghana, Mr. Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, popularly known as Sir John, in illegal mining. FWG, therefore, calls for investigation into the allegations.
GHANA LAUNCHES TIMBER TRANSPARENCY PORTAL
Ghana has launched the Ghana Timber Transparency Portal, a public portal that provides access to information on logging in Ghana. The portal can be accessed by all stakeholders both in and beyond Ghana in real time via the url: www.ghanatimbertransparency.info. This is part of governance reforms in the forest sector happening as a result of the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) signed between Ghana and the European Union in 2009.
The Ghana Timber Transparency Portal was developed as a result of collaboration between Civic Response (a leading natural resource and environmental governance policy advocacy organisation in Ghana) and the FC under the auspices of the former’s Civil Society-led Independent Forest Monitoring (CSIFM) Project with funding from the EU, Swedish International Cooperation Agency and UKAid under the FAO-EU FLEGT Programme.
The Ghana Rosewood Mess: Fast-Tracking Ghana VPA Implementation as a Solution
“Rosewood logging and trade under salvage permit is undermining significant strides made over the last decade at addressing illegal logging; and reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation in Ghana.
As rosewood and other trees in the northern regions are logged, the area fast becomes a desert, making agriculture difficult, compounding their increasing poverty levels.
CSOs have sighted a letter from the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources authorizing the Forestry Commission to grant to Messrs Attakey Limited, salvage permit for the removal of 5000 cubic meters (250 units of 40ft containers) of Rosewood from Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions (combined is 57% of the total landmass of Ghana).
This permit gives us the impression that the company has been granted a blank “cheque” to remove as much Rosewood as the company can.”
THE CONTROVERSY BETWEEN MINISTERS OVER EXTON CUBIC’S MINING LEASE IS EMBARRASSING
“The current controversy surrounding Exton Cubic Group Limited’s mineral licence in the Tano Offin Forest Reserve is a big embarrassment to government and completely exposes the loopholes in the mineral rights allocation. This needless confusion does not bode well with natural resources governance and sustainable development of the country….
Forest Watch Ghana challenges the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources to be consistent with the 2012 Forest and Wildlife Policy (and the Forest Development Master Plan; the vehicle for implementing the 2012 FWP).”