The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources says there is no record that the late former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Forestry Commission, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie aka Sir John owns portions of the Achimota Forest or Ramsar site.
This according to the Ministry follows checks at the Lands Commission as part of investigations of the deceased’s Will which bequeathed portions of these lands to his relatives.
In view of this, the government has decided to take over the lands purportedly acquired by Sir John in the Achimota Forest and the Sakumono Ramsar Site.
These were contained in a statement signed by the Land and Natural Resources Minister, Samuel Abu Jinapor.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the bequeathing of the aforesaid lands, if established, will not pass any interest/title to the named beneficiaries in the alleged Will.
“These lands, the subject matter of the alleged Will, shall remain Public Lands, whether or not it falls within the de-gazetted lands pursuant to E.I, 144,” parts of the statement read.
The statement added that, the government will act on any improper acquisition of any public lands, regardless of how it was procured, whether now or in the past, and the Achimota Forest lands will not be an exception.
The will of Sir John has come under intense scrutiny in the last 72 hours and has triggered mixed reactions on social media.
The will is a long list of 75 properties including houses, parcels of land, bank accounts, investments, businesses, guns and clothes.
It has raised public concerns following the discovery that he owned lands in the Achimota Forest and Sakumono Ramsar site a few days after President Akufo-Addo signed an executive instrument that said part of the Achimota Forest was no longer a forest reserve.
Below is the Ministry’s full statement: