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Management of forest resources in the country lacks transparency -CSO
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Lack of transparency and accountability in the country’s forest resource management has been identified as a hinder to efficient revenue generation for government.

Mr. Willie Laate, Deputy Executive Director of the Centre for Indigenous Knowledge and Organizational Development (CIDKOD), a civil society organization in the forest sector, said the Forestry Commission (FC) had not reviewed stumpage fees for logging companies since 2003.

This, he said, had resulted in loss of revenue to the government and other stakeholders in the forest sector although there is a legislative instrument (LI 1649) that requires the Commission to review stumpage fees on timber on quarterly basis.

Mr. Laate made the call at the launch of its Annual Transparency Report Card for the forest sector in Takoradi on Thursday.

He entreated the FC to work more closely with the Office of the Administrator of Stool Lands, traditional authorities and District Assemblies so that the calculation of logging revenue is made transparent and ensured that logging companies adhere strictly to it.

He suggested that there must be regular publication of disbursement reports on logging revenues in order to raise awareness among the populace and stakeholders in the forest sector.

Mr. Laate added his voice to the call for the passage of the Right to Information Bill into law to ensure easy access to information in the forest sector.

Source: GNA

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