The Deputy Greater Accra Regional Manager of the Forestry Commission, George Agbenowoshi, has revealed that Chinese nationals frequently arrested for illegal mining activities, known as galamsey, are often discharged by the courts due to a lack of interpreters.

He noted that these cases typically drag on in court and are eventually dismissed because of the language barrier.

Speaking at a mini ceremony organized by Parliament as part of its activities to mark the 2024 Green Ghana Day, Mr. Agbenowoshi lamented the numerous challenges faced by district Forestry offices across the country.

He emphasized the untimely release of funds and the legal difficulties the Commission encounters in prosecuting Chinese nationals.

“We have the challenge of timely release of funds for forestry-related activities including plantation activities in our sector and issues sent to court have been there for years without redress. Issues of mining activities involving Chinese that take an interpreter to translate are often thrown out of court as a result of the lack of an interpreter.”

Mr. Agbenowoshi also bemoaned the inadequate logistics which he indicated is negatively affecting its fight against forest offences including galamsey, illegal farming and a host of other illicit activities.

“Logistics such as pickup vehicles and motorbikes for our field operations and activities at the various districts stations are challenging…and that makes it difficult to fight forest offences in our forest reserves.

“These offenses include illegal mining activities, illegal farming, bushfires, illegal lumbering, illegal logging and chainsaw activities across the country.