The arrested suspects and members of the taskforce
Seven persons, between the ages of 14 and 35 years, have been arrested in a forest near Tamale, the Northern Regional capital, for allegedly smoking marijuana (wee) and encroaching on the forest.
A joint military and police taskforce arrested them in an exercise initiated by the Tamale mayor to restore sanity and rid the Tamale forest of encroachers.
The taskforce was unable to arrest all the encroachers as it is believed they had a tip-off that the exercise was going to be embarked upon.
When DAILY GUIDE went to the forest with the security personnel, all structures put up there were destroyed and burnt by the taskforce.
Some large quantities of dry leaves suspected to be marijuana and some white substance suspected to be cocaine were retrieved from the arrested persons.
Tamale mayor Musah Superior himself was among the taskforce that swooped on the encroachers.
The action came after a 21-day ultimatum given by the mayor for all encroachers to vacate the forest had elapsed.
Mr Musah Superior said all individuals occupying the forest would be removed to make room for the achievement of the dream of the Tamale Metropolitan Assembly – turning the forest into a recreational centre.
According to him, the metropolis would launch a fight against public smoking from October 31, 2017. This is part of a strategy to restore sanity and security in the metropolis in particular and the region at large.
Meanwhile, Mr Musah Superior has advised the encroachers – who are mostly teenagers – to enroll in schools or learn some vocational skills.
He said that his outfit would provide all the necessary support to individuals who want to engage in a trade.
The mayor charged persons with business ideas to contact his office with their ideas as the assembly might be able to help them acquire funds from state institutions such as MANSLOC to implement their ideas.
FROM Eric Kombat, Tamale