Programmes Manager of the Ghana Integrity Initiative, Mary Awelena Addah

Senior Programmes and Research Officer of the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), Mary Addah, believes that the ongoing investigation into the will of late Forestry Commission CEO, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, even though may not lead to his arrest, will serve as a form of holding him accountable to his actions.

“It is for best practice and also for posterity to determine that during the lifetime of somebody who was a public officer when issues around conflict arose, when he was not able to delineate the difference between his personal and public interest, an investigation ensued and some very good findings were made or the determinations suggest if they’re made in our favour will then guide the process going forward,” she said.

Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express, she stated that the actions of Kwadwo Osei Afriyie breached several laws in Ghana particularly the Company’s Act of 2019 which concerns with the manner in which public officers conduct themselves in office.

According to her, should the investigation conclude that the Forestry Commission boss had used his office to acquire the Achimota Forest lands and those at the Sakumono Ramsar site, it would serve a strong legal precedent which would come in handy in the future to hold others accountable.

“This will be a very good case for us to document that it happened practically, and not just in speaking in the theoretical sense that a public officer during his lifetime tried to engineer some of these processes to circumvent the processes that have been put in place to ensure that he didn’t do what he was supposed to be doing.

“ for us it is a good case going forward that the Special Prosecutor looks into it, the investigation goes beyond just Sir John because there are other interests involved,” she said.

She further called for the investigation of others who would be found connected to this illicit activity starting from Charles Owusu a former aide of the Forestry Commission boss, who is also named in the will as a part owner of land at Achimota.

As well, she called for other senior executives of the Commission to also be investigated for the roles they played in the acquisition of the reserved land.