Mr Henry Quartey, Greater Accra Regional Minister, on Monday met with encroachers of the remaining 900-acre lands of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research-Animal Research Institute (CSIR-ARI) to discuss regularization of the lands.
Recommendations will be made to the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources within 72 hours after the meeting for appropriate steps to be taken towards the regularization process.
The engagement was attended by Mr Benito Owusu-Bio, a Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources; Madam Elizabeth Naa Kwatsoe Tawiah Sackey, Mayor of Accra; Mohammed Adamu Ramadan, Member of Parliament (MP), Adenta Constituency.
Also present were: Mr Daniel Alexander Nii-Noi Adumuah, Municipal Chief Executive, Adentan Municipal Assembly (AdMA); representatives from CSIR-ARI, Land Use and Spatial Planning Authority (LUPSA), Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation (MESTI), amongst others.
The Regional Security Council (REGSEC), led by Mr Quartey and the Adentan Municipal Assembly on Wednesday embarked on a demolishing exercise of unauthorized structures within the 200-acre fenced CSIR-ARI enclave at Adentan-Frafraha.
The demolition followed a 48-hour ultimatum issued by Mr Quartey to encroachers to vacate the premises or be forced to.
After the exercise, Mr Quartey noted that an additional 900 acres of land belonging to CSIR-ARI had been encroached occupying between 3,000 to 4,000 buildings.
He then urged the Landlords Association to engage CSIR-ARI and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources to discuss ways by which they could regularize those lands to allow owners of properties to receive legal documents.
Mr Quartey, also the Chairman of the REGSEC, charged the leadership of CSIR-ARI to protect the 200-acre land that had been retrieved for them by REGSEC.
The Minister said failure to do so would force him to submit a report against them for negligence.
He said it was alleged that some staff of CSIR-ARI were involved in the sale of the lands to encroachers and urged leadership of CSIR-ARI to assist the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to investigate the matter.
He advised occupants of Ramsar sites at Sakumono in Accra to stay clear off the place, adding that, next week REGSEC would visit the area.
The MP of Adenta Constituency acknowledged the bold step undertaken by REGSEC and commended the President’s directive to regularize the about 3,000 to 4,000 houses without documentation outside the 200 acres of CSIR lands.
Professor Paul P. Bosu, Director-General, CSIR thanked the Government for its efforts at retrieving the land.
He assured them that they would work with all stakeholders to make the regularization successful.
Prof. Bosu said they would also cooperate with the Police to allow for a smooth investigation into the allegations concerning the involvement of some staff of CSIR in the sale of the land.
A representative of the ‘landlord’ of the 900-acre land said they would henceforth live peacefully with management of CSIR and withdraw any court case filed against the institution.
She said they would collaborate with CSIR at every stage of the regularization process and help them protect the 200-acre land that had been retrieved.