The Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources Hon. Benito Owusu-Bio has paid a working visit to INBAR’s new allocated West Africa Regional Office (WARO) in Accra, the capital of Ghana.
The visit reflects the continuous commitment of the Government of Ghana in its quest to continue hosting and supporting INBAR WARO in the execution of its mission to sustainably develop bamboo and rattan resources across West Africa.
The Deputy Minister expressed that he hopes the new office suits the status of a Regional Office of an international organization such as INBAR, particularly given its close proximity to the Cooperation Head Office of the Forestry Commission of Ghana.
"It is my sincere believe that management at INBAR Headquarters in Beijing appreciates this new office and that Ghana will continue to host and support the Regional Office to serve the West Africa Region effectively," he said.
Up until October 2022, INBAR WARO was hosted by the Forestry Research Institute of Ghana of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR-FORIG) in the city of Kumasi for 19 years. However, over the years, Accra has seen increased political and administrative activities along with higher concentration of international organizations.
Accordingly, INBAR leadership envisioned that relocating INBAR WARO to the capital would enhance INBAR’s working relations with its Focal Ministry in Ghana along with other line ministries, agencies and other international organizations, situating it in the perfect area for enhancing multistakeholder collaboration.
In July 2022, the Government of Ghana, through its Ministry for Lands and Natural Resource, officially granted INBAR a new office space in Accra. Accordingly, there was much jubilation when the Deputy Minister and Technical Director jointly visited INBAR WARO to inspect the new office facilities and officially complete handover of the office to INBAR.
Mr. Michael Kwaku, Acting INBAR Regional Director for INBAR WARO, accepted the office handover on behalf of Ali Mchumo, INBAR Director General. He thanked the Government of Ghana, especially the actions of the Minister, Deputy Minister and Technical Director at the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources for hosting and supporting INBAR WARO for nearly two decades.
He praised their support over the years and mentioned that government aid is vital for bolstering sustainable development efforts around the world, particularly for tackling global challenges like climate change, landscape degradation and rural poverty.
Mr. Kwaku assured the government envoys that INBAR will continue to deepen its ties with Ghana to serve as the gateway for the development of bamboo and rattan resources, as multifunctional nature-based solutions, across other INBAR Member States in West Africa.
Mr. Kwaku led the high-level guests around the new facilities, which include offices for the Regional Director, Accounts, Administration, Communications and Research, and Programs.
The Deputy Minister was accompanied by Mr. Joseph Osiakwan, the Technical Director at the same Ministry who also doubles as the INBAR Focal Point in Ghana.