Osu Stool Heads To Court Over Real Owners Of Achimota Forest

Osu Stool Heads To Court Over Real Owners Of Achimota Forest

The Traditional Stool of the people of Ga has also said they will petition the government as well in their quest to be recognized as the real owners of the Achimota Forest.

The Osu Stool also claim the land in question is for their family constituting 14 different families.

“We will be going to court. We will go to court even though we have some reservations, we will be going to court and there, we will petition the government as well that’s fine, if they said they want to release the land, we are all for it”. Member of the Osu Stool, Nii Odoi Kwao II has said.

According to Nii Odoi Kwao II who spoke on Joy News Wednesday, there is no family in the Osu Traditional area known as the Owoo family.

“Yes it’s a scam. Because Owoo family does not exist in Osu, that is number one. And they (government) are saying that Owoo family petitioned them. .  If the government says there is a family called the Owoo family who own the land, consider it a scam”. Nii Odoi Kwao II said in an interview on Joy News monitored by MyNewsGH.com.

Giving the Historical background of the Owoo family, Nii Odoi Kwao II disclosed that “Nii Owoo himself died in 1867 and he had no child at his death so nobody succeeded him”.

What do we know so far about the Achimota Forest Saga?

The government through the ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, in the past weeks, declared that some portions of the Achimota Forest in Accra, in the southern periphery close to the N1 highway, handed over to the Owoo Family in 2013 is no longer a forest reserve.

This follows the coming into force of Executive Instrument (E.I.) 144 gazette on behalf of President Nana Ado Danka Akufo-Addo on April 19, 2022, by the sector Minister Samuel Abu Jinapor.

This means effective May 1, 2022, those portions, [361 acres] sections of which had been developed and had already been granted to the Owoo Family in September 2013 is no longer a forest reserve.

In 2007, the Owoo Family, the 1927 pre-acquisition owners of the land petitioned the government during the tenure of President John Agyekum Kufuor to release the un-used portions of the forest in the southern periphery to the family in lieu of compensation, which had not been paid over the years since 1927 when the land was acquired by the state.

In 2008, the government agreed to lease the southern periphery of the forest to the family for a period of 99 years.

In 2011, the Owoo Family again petitioned the government during the tenure of President John Evans Atta Mills on the issue and another committee was constituted to look into the petition.

After the government was satisfied with the Owoo family’s application, President John Dramani Mahama released the portions in the southern periphery to the family in September 2013.

The government working through the Forestry Commission also decided to convert the forest itself into an Eco-Park.

Therefore the 1930 Instrument which classified the entire area as a forest reserve needed to be amended.

President Akufo-Addo under Executive Instrument 144 on April 19, 2022 therefore lifted the 1927 classification of those portions of the Achimota Forest in the southern periphery as a Forest Reserve.

The EI 144 was published together with the Forests (Achimota Firewood Plantation Forest Reserve) (Amendment) Instrument, 2022 (EI 154).

The EI 144 was to make the peripheral portions of the forest reserve cease to be a forest reserve to ensure a development that was consistent with the area of the forest reserve.

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