Though some district Assemblies in the Upper West region have put in place stringent measures coupled with governments ban on the cutting and transporting of rosewood, the practice is still ongoing in some parts of the region.
The felling of rosewood and its transportation was at its zenith in 2012 forcing government to ban its salvaging, cutting, and transportation.
JoyNews Upper West regional correspondent reports, the rare species that take about a hundred years to fill grow, are cut in a split second into pieces by unscrupulous for transporting and exporting to persons and secretly transported out of the region for export.
According to an environmental investigation agency report, about six million rosewood trees have been cut down in Ghana for illegal export to China since 2012.
Despite government’s ban and further tightening other loopholes on the illegal trade and felling of the endangered species, the practice continues. The personalities fingered in the act are corrupt government officials and local authorities.
The illegal practice in the Upper West region could best be described as hide and seek. Here, the illegal loggers finds a district or an outlandish communality to ply their trade.
When their sins are been exposed they could go on the quiet and move to another communality to continue with their nefarious activities.
Wa West MP Superintendent retired Peter Tuubu in whose constituency the practice is on the rise is deeply worried to the marrow.
“I got into the forest and I saw beautiful trees that were been cut down. I began to see a desert that was moving faster than before,” he lamented.
Wa West District Assembly in 2018 arrested this rosewood that was cut in some communities in the district and dumped them at the Wechiau police station.
The Wa West DCE, Edward Laabiri Sobo agrees with Supt retired Peter Tuubu that something must be done to save the indiscriminate cutting of rosewoods.
However, he said it is difficult to fight it because the people are not ready to give out information to enable the security arrest the perpetrators.
Since the practice was done on the quiet, the team, therefore, went on the prowl for days driving from one district to the other for days looking for communities where such illegal felling of the rosewood is taking place.
“When we bumped into these 10 pieces of rosewood dumped by the roadside at Kparidabuo we knew we were about hitting our target.
“We managed to meander our way through the forest which was fast depleting because of the activities of the illegal logger and on bumpy inaccessible routes to get to the Kojokperi enlace. There we have our target.
“Hundreds of the tree species about the size of four-footer containers were cut and arrested by the Daffiama- Bussie Issa district Assembly. Some were recently cut, evidence that the practice has still not stopped.
Assemblyman for Kojokperi-North, Jaaniti Maurice told the reporter how they were arrested. He also spoke about the devastating effect of cutting down the trees.
Maurice also spoke about the effects that the illegal logging of the rosewood on their communities
“The activities of these rich powerful cabal sometimes aided by some security personnel and community leaders is tearing the communities apart as some of them are either for them or not. The result is disunity and pockets of conflicts among community members,” he said.
Daffiama-Busie Issa District Chief Executive, Nadi Moro Sanda, however, said the people in the district have acted and has put in place stringent measures, the results are what they are reaping today
The importance of rosewood on the outside in the far east or the other side of the Atlantic is enormous. Be it Beijing, London or NewYork it is used to make furniture for the highest class in society especially for kings and queens
However, on the streets of the Upper West Region, rosewood is treated as mere firewood, used to make a local guitar and the leaves used as food for animals.
The cruel reality, however, is that people are unaware that they gain only little from the illegal cutting and sale of the special species God has given them but are not unaware it devastating effect on the environment and their lives.
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