The Dansoman Circuit Court has issued a bench warrant for the arrest of Samuel Samuel Atsu Forson, CEO of Summertime Company Limited, and ten others for their involvement in the illegal destruction of a 150-acre Cinderella plantation at Kofi Kwei near Nsawam.

The plantation, established by Bomarts Farms Limited 15 years ago, was intended to rejuvenate the land after years of pineapple cultivation.

The illegal sand winners, led by Atsu Forson, have been accused of invading the plantation with armed thugs, destroying valuable economic trees, and severely damaging the topsoil.

 The destruction has left huge gullies on the land, rendering it unsuitable for agricultural use.

Despite multiple complaints to the Kotoku, Junction, and Amanfrom Police Stations, no action was initially taken.

Intervention by the Greater Accra Regional Police Headquarters led to the arrest of ten operatives involved in the destruction.

These individuals were granted bail and summoned to appear before the Dansoman Circuit Court but failed to do so. As a result, a bench warrant was issued for their arrest, including Forson, on May 2, 2024.

 However, the police have yet to enforce the warrant, and illegal activities continue unabated.

Bomarts Farms Ltd., a prominent Ghanaian company established in 1985, specializes in the cultivation of fresh pineapples, mangoes, and sweet potatoes, as well as processing dried fruits for export.

 The company operates several large farms across Ghana, including a 700-acre mango farm in Tafi Abuife, a 360-acre mango farm in Somanya, a 2,000-acre pineapple farm in Mmampehia, and a 1,000-acre mango farm in Saru.

Bomarts Farms also manages agroforestry plantations in Kofi Kwei, featuring 360 acres of teak and 155 acres of Cedrela.

The company employs nearly 1,600 workers, providing significant livelihood support and contributing to local social development projects.

Anthony Botchway, CEO of Bomarts Farms, expressed his frustration to Starr News:

“We planted pineapples on this land until the year 2009 when we realized that the land was becoming marginalized and fertility was growing lower and lower so we decided to find a way to make the land useful. The solution was forest plantation for the purpose of improving upon the microclimate of the area and also joining in the campaign of green Ghana then also have a selling point because on the international market if you have a way of carbon sequestration it serves as a selling point. We had this plantation but in February we heard someone was winning sand on the land destroying everything ” Anthony Botchway said.

Meanwhile, the Sea Freight Pineapple Exporters of Ghana (SPEG) have petitioned several government officials and agencies, including the Interior Minister, Lands and Natural Resource Minister, Minister of Trade and Industry, and others, seeking immediate intervention.

 Despite this, only the Minerals Commission has visited the site.

“We are urgently calling on the government to intervene and take necessary action to bring the perpetrators to justice and establish lasting solutions to stop this menace. It severely impacts farming and our business operations,” stated Soloifton Benjamin, Chairman of SPEG.

Source: Ghana/ Ansah