Many public sector workers usually sneak out of their working places when transferred or on retirement. This, some attribute to their guilt of not leaving behind any impact or legacy.
Evaluations of public sector workers almost don’t exist as many sleep on their jobs and still get paid their salary every month. This has been the result of less productivity and thus a financial loss to government since people are paid for no work done. This anti-development attitude barely exists in the private sector as your remuneration depends on your input.
There exist the issue of public sector worker or state agencies that ought to protect state assets turn around and facilitate the dissipation of such assets and still get paid for their nefarious activities just for their selfish gains.
Distinguished public sector workers on many occasions are given a short send- off ceremonies as a sign of appreciation for whatever legacy or positive change they have brought to their field of work. This exemplifies the working life of Dr.Nana Owusu Ansah of the Gbele Resource Reserve park manager in the Sissala East Municipal of the Upper West Region of Ghana.
Dr.Nana Owusu Ansah took over the Gbele Resource Reserve as the fifth manager and in the year 2009 until 2021 when he was reassigned to the Forestry Commission Training Center as the lead Wildlife instructor where his vast experience could be imparted into upcoming leaders in the field of Wildlife.
During the reign of Dr Nana Owusu Ansah, many success stories were achieved and notable among them are:
- The famous resettlement of the Gbele community from the heart of the reserve to a newly acquired land, new accommodation for inhabitants, land for farming and a dam for their animals and other domestic use. This was a World Bank sponsored project. This was to ensure ecological value of the park.
- The provision of six dugouts to fringe communities in Gbele, Jijen, Selle, Kamahego, Duong, and Sentie with the purpose of saving the community members from zoonotic diseases transmission and park from cattle invasion under the SLWMP.
- Desilting of Gwollu crocodile pond to forestall human-wildlife conflicts
- There was an implementation of the organic Shea nut program in ten communities with 12, 000 women beneficiaries. This was complemented with construction of 4 warehouse and drying platform in four communities under the SLWMP
- Migratory animals were rescued and translocated to Kumasi zoo (elephant) and Accra zoo (Roan antelope).
- On tourism development, his leadership saw a number of access route within the reserve or park to enable safari on the part of visitors.
- There was a construction of a viewing height at Yelibie river to enable visitors have a view of animals that come around the river to quench thirst.
- Under his reign again, arrangements were made to enable workers go for further studies and got up-graded.
Apart from the above-enumerated successes, Dr.Nana Owusu Ansah and his deputy Dr Maabir Polycarp fought fiercely against rosewood logging in the park and even nearly got a disciplinary transfer as their position was in defiance with some superiors who wanted to enjoy the booty.
Dr Nana Owusu Ansah engaged in series of sensitization among the fringe communities on the need to eschew poaching in the park. He dealt with the recalcitrant poachers under wildlife laws to serve as deterrence.
Dr Nana Owusu Ansah’s most admired attitude and fondly remembered by the Sissala people is, his ‘can- not –buy stand (not bribable) and not easily corrupted or influenced by politicians for their political gains.
The most sustaining aspect of his impact in the Sissala area has to do with how he mentored his deputy and other staff to take up the passion for the work they were employed to do with little or no supervision.
The Sissala people take solace for the fact that, his deputy has taken over the managerial or mantle of leadership of the park and hence his works continuous.
Against this backdrop, it was not therefore surprising to have seen overwhelming attendance at a very short but colorful send-off ceremony organized to honor his work in the area.
Many well wishes took their turn to eulogize him and wished him well in his next field.
Some representatives of the fringe communities gave him Sissala names all resonating very honest and truthful servant. Others wished he hadn’t leave as his working relationship with communities was described as unique.
Almost every participant at the ceremony wanted to have a picture with the patriotic servant Dr.Nana Owusu Anash as they said; such servants are rare to meet these days especially among public servants.
Several donations came in from different persons and from communities as a token of appreciation of his services to the reserve.
Dr Nana Owusu Ansah was described as the second public servant to have graced the area with hard work, honesty, passion and impactful after a medical doctor by name Dr. Ama left many years ago.
Any person posted to work at a place is usually and carefully being observed by the people or area they serve and hence should not just pretend to be working. Nobody loses for dedicating and committing to the services they render work.
BY: AYAMGA BAWA FATAWU
A SOCIAL ACTIVIST/TOURISM WRITER