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Sakumo Ramsar site committee inaugurated to check encroachment

By
Laudia Sawer

Tema, July 13, GNA – A 12-member Sakumo Ramsar
Committee has been inaugurated by the Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA) to check
encroachment on the Sakumo wetlands.

The committee members comprised of
representatives of the Tema Traditional Council (TTC), National Disaster
Management Organization (NADMO), Forestry Commission, Tema Development
Corporation (TDC), Town and Country Planning, among other stakeholders.

The about 1,364 hectares of Sakumo Ramsar site
covers parts of Tema community three, five, six, 11 and 12, through to the
Sakumono village, old Lashibi, and Klagon.

The site which used to be a habitat for fishes
and other water creatures as well as served as a stopover for migrating birds,
currently has a large portion being encroached upon by individuals and estate
developers.

Sakumo Ramsar site which is also used by
farmers to cultivate vegetables during the dry season has also been turned into
a refuse dumping site which is gradually killing aquatic life in the wetland.

The terms of reference for the committee
include liaising with the Ghana Survey Department to locate and identify the
boundaries of the Ramsar site.

Members are also to erect marked pillars on
top of earth mounds, properly protect the buffer zones.

Other terms are the restoration of the
ecosystem of the lagoon and areas outside the site where feeder streams join
the Sakumo Lagoon.

They are also to ensure the dredging of the
front of the lagoon by opening of the channel for invasive plants on it to be
removed, to enable fishermen to fish.

Committee members are also to identify structures
and owners of property sites who have encroached and have to be removed, as
well as remove slums along the Sakumono railways adjacent to the Ramsar Site.

They are also to decongest Cambodia slum
environs and come out with timelines in dealing with issues in affected areas
as well as provide other relevant suggestions and recommendations.

The TMA also inaugurated a Sanitation
Committee which has 12 terms of reference to improve sanitation in the
Metropolis.

GNA

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