The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has denied that a land guard has been hired to guard state lands.
The Ministry stated in a statement, “The Ministry would like to set the record straight that the government, and for that matter, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, do not contract the services of land guards in its operations.”
“However, the Ministry through its agency Lands Commission legally engaged the services of Aynok Holding Limited, a registered Limited liability company to assist in reclaiming encroached government lands. The engagement has been in effect since 2012.
“We wish to state categorically that government and by extension, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources employs a legal process to reclaim all encroached state lands,” the Ministry said in a statement.
On Monday, July 17, Tamale North Member of Parliament Alhassn Suhuyini announced that the Chief Director of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Professor Patrick Agbesinyale, had revealed that a land guard had been appointed to defend public lands.
Suhiyini stated that this was discovered during a meeting between the Lands and Forestry Committee of Parliament and the Ministry.
Speaking to media in Parliament on Monday, July 17, he expressed reservations about engaging with someone whose activities are illegal.
He also said the Committee is requesting to know the terms and conditions of the said contract.
“In our engagement, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources the Chief Director revealed, shockingly, that the Ministry has resorted to engaging a land guard to retrieve and protect government lands.
“Mind you, these are lands that are held on behalf of the people of Ghana and vested in the President to protect it. I am sure that the framers of the Constitution are aware that the president is the Commander-In-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces and he is seized with the capacity to ensure that these lands are protected for our common use, that is why the lands are vested in the president, and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources is the Ministry tasked with the responsibility of overseeing these lands.
“So for the Ministry to tell us the lack of capacity of the state to protect these lands that are put in trust but to resort to the services of people whose activities have been outlawed for the protection of these lands came to us as a surprise.
“We have therefore demanded from the Ministry the terms and conditions of that unholy relationship between the Ministry and this land guard and his institution. We cannot pass laws that we do not intend to keep.”