The government has revealed that five containers of rosewood impounded at the Tema Port will be allocated for use in the construction of the National Cathedral.
Speaking to JoyNews‘ Manuel Koranteng, the Lands Minister, Samuel Abu Jinapor, stated that the decision by the government is to utilise the impounded rosewood to facilitate work on the National Cathedral.
“Government is taking the decision to donate all rosewood confiscated towards the construction of the National Cathedral. In addition to the ban on the export of rosewood, there will not even be a public auction for the purposes of domestic use of rosewood. All rosewood confiscated should and will be donated to the National Cathedral for the good people of this country.
“When the National Cathedral turns out to have enough of rosewood, we will take other measures either to donate it to other public institutions and if we are even-minded, at any stage, to have a public auction for domestic use, be rest assured that it will be done in a sense of integrity,” he said.
The containers, which are being evacuated from the port on Friday, July 30, were marked for inspection after the Energy Commission raised red flags that they could be containing illegal charcoal.
Though the harvesting, transportation and export of rosewood have been banned since 2013, several investigations have revealed illegal trade of the endangered species still continues.
Mr Jinapor stressed that the Akufo-Addo government is poised to end the long-lasting menace.
He further commended the port officials for working diligently to impound rosewood being harvested and transported illegally.
“I am here to observe for myself and I must quickly admit that I am absolutely satisfied with the work of customs and with the work of port officials in impounding the five containers of rosewood,” he said.
Meanwhile, investigations are being carried out to identify and apprehend the owners of the five containers.