Broadcaster Nana Aba Anamoah has described as ‘senseless’ foot soldiers who are vehemently defending Sir John’s Will in which he allegedly gave part of the Achimota Forest lands to his relatives.
On the back of the brouhaha surrounding the Achimota Forest lands, a screenshot of page 5 of the Last Will of Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie aka Sir John, who until his demise was the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Forestry Commission, went viral on Sunday, May 22, 2022.
It showed that Sir John together with one Charles Owusu had already secured parts of the Achimota Forests with three different lands distributed to some family members of the deceased.
“I give my land also situate at Achimota Forest in the name of Fasoh Limited and measuring 0.987 acres to my nephews Michael Owusu, Yaw Boadu and Kwabena Amoateng, forever.
“I jointly own a piece of land at Achimota Forest with Charles Owusu, upon my demise, my portion of the said land should be given to Ruth Korkor Odonkor.
“I give my portion of the land that I jointly own at the Achimota Forest in the name of DML Limited to Elizabeth Asare Boateng who at the time of making this Will is domiciled in the USA, forever,” portions of Sir John’s will read.
Some foot soldiers of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) have attempted to rise and defend the Will, engendering controversy on various social media platforms.
Reacting to the development, Nana Aba Anamoah was puzzled over the incessant quest to mount a spirited defence for the Will. According to her, whoever defends the Will is a pillock.
“The worst part is the foot soldiers defending the will. Mo nim nyansa baako sei,” she tweeted.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has said it is investigating the matter.
A statement issued on May 22, 2022, said: “The Ministry takes a very serious view of the allegations, and has requested for all documents relating to the lands in question, as part of an initial inquiry to ascertain the veracity of the claims. Considering that the issues that form the basis of the allegations predate the tenure of the current Minister, Hon. Samuel A. Jinapor, MP, it is important that he is seized with the full facts to enable him take appropriate action, if, indeed, there is any merit in the claims.
“The Ministry assures the general public and the good people of Ghana that it will ensure that the national interest is protected at all times, especially in matters pertaining to the Achimota Forest.”
The Achimota Forest controversy
There was a news report suggesting that the Government had 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 E.I., 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 explained further that the government is returning 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.