Achimota forest saga: Owoo family received compensation in 1951 – Inusah Fuseini

INUSAH FUSEINI ?resize=1000%2C600&ssl=1 Alhaji Inusah Fuseini

Thu, 19 May 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Parts of Achimota Forest declassified as a forest reserve

This is according to Executive Instrument 144

Abu Jinapor denies the forest has been sold

Alhaji Inusah Fuseini, a former Minister for Lands and Natural Resources under the John Dramani Mahama administration, has stated that the Owoo family was duly compensated, by the British colonial government, for the land that currently serves as the Achimota Forest Reserve.

According to him, the colonial government gave the allodial owners of the land an amount of 4000 pounds in 1951.

"I am aware that the colonial government paid four thousand pounds for the land and that was a huge amount of money in 1951," the former MP, Tamale Central said on Joy FM’s Top Story, Wednesday, May 18.

Fuseini added that, as a Lands Minister, he also witnessed a ceremony that was held in the forest to release about ninety to a hundred acres of the land to the Owoo family.

“A study was done and then we all agreed, including the Owoo family that, that was what they were entitled to. There was a ceremony to release that part to them that took place in the forest itself.

"I was there, the Wulomei was there, the Owoo family was there, and my deputy and everybody were there…about ninety to hundred acres thereabouts was released to them,” he explained.

He said, the government of Ghana did all that to please family and in the long run, to prevent any further encroachment on the forest and to enable the forest to be put to good use.

“With the greatest respect to the Owoo family, they have always maintained that they are not entitled to a dime. That’s why in my letter, I only maintained that it was only on compassionate grounds with the realisation and acknowledgement of the fact that they were the allodial owners of the land,” he said.

Alhaji Inusah Fuseini noted that the Owoo family to the best of his knowledge “have never claimed compensation of the land.”

“What they have always said is because that vast amount of land was taken from them, it deprived them the benefit of the use of the land and now they are almost robbed of their resource and so government should reach out to them and see how it can put them in a better position to continue to carry on as a family.

“The ultimate purpose for the return of the land to the Owoo family on compassionate grounds under His Excellency John Mahama was to try to protect what was left of the forest. So, if you don’t protect the forest and you just declassify the forest, what is the guarantee that there won’t be further encroachment?” Alhaji Inusah Fuseini quizzed.


There were news reports earlier this week suggesting that the Government has gazetted an Executive Instrument (E.I.) to approve the redesignation, sale or development of Achimota Forest.

A document from the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, making reference to an Executive Instrument, stated that the Achimota Forest Reserve is to no longer be regarded as a forest reserve.

“An Executive Instrument (E.I.) 144 gazetted on behalf of President Akufo-Addo by the Lands Minister Samuel Abdulai Jinapor indicates that effective May 1, 2022, the land on which the Forest is located shall cease to be a forest reserve.

“The President’s action was in accordance with Section 19 of the Forest Act, 1927 (CAP. 157) which gives him the authority to declare that particular land is no longer required as a forest reserve,” portions of the purported E.I. read.

But, Samuel Abu Jinapor, Minister, Lands and Natural Resources, dismissing these accusations at a press conference on Tuesday, said the Executive Instrument, E.I. 144, pertained to 361 acres of peripherals of the Achimota forest.

He added that the government is returning it to its custodial owners, identified as the Owoo family because the land was not being used for its intended purpose, which included the extension of the Achimota School.

Source: www.ghanaweb.com
Related Articles: