Make Parks and Gardens work again

HERITAGE MONTH: a focus on Tetteh Quarshie and youth involvement into tourism

In January 2022, some presentations were made to the Department of Parks and Gardens by its supervisory ministry. It reportedly included: a tipper truck (to replace a 30-year old one!); a Land Cruiser Prado; a pick-up truck; three desktop computers and two laptops; 29 lawn mowers; 24 chainsaw machines; 24 grass shapers; four polytanks and 11 ladders.

One may wonder if that would be adequate in making them effective, nevertheless, the acting Director of the Department, Rev Charles Ayitey Okine, described it as a survival boom and indicated that from next month they will swing into serious action not only in the capital, but nationwide.

He gave assurance that the Department will be helping to realize the President’s aspiration of making Accra the cleanest city in Africa.

“He said in the past, the department wrote proposals for budgetary allocations, but they never materialized. Consequently, Rev Okine added: “The morale of staff had been boosted to work hard, adding that this year, Ghanaians would feel the presence of the department, not only in Accra, but also across the country.”  Well it’s over a year now and the rain have started and Accra look weedy. Not only Accra Tema as well. I don’t know if other cities are in better shape.  I have been driving within the city along some major streets i.e. Adenta to Accra, Tema motorway to Accra and Kasoa, Ofankor to Accra, Teshie to Accra, Teshie to Circle, Kasoa to Circle and I’ve not been impressed with the level of weeds and bushes around. Any first time visitor to Accra may not be impressed seeing that.  Anyone who has use any of these streets in recent weeks will notice that the medians and shoulders of the road have been engulfed with weeds and bushes. One wonders why these weeds and bushes have been allowed to grow to such an extent after given by thee Director. I saw some gentlemen weeding the median along the Tema motorway stretch. I was surprised to see them using their man power to weed when they could be given grace trimmers which makes the work faster and easier. On Monday I used the road leading to Kasoa and the weeds and bushes were so high. Every passing year, we are faced with this same problem. We need some education as to which agency is responsible to keep the city clean of weeds. Driving around the Tetteh Quarshie interchange in recent weeks is not the most beautiful sight of a city we want for Accra the capital city of Ghana. We must not forget that tourist who arrive in Ghana from Nigeria, Benin and Togo by road first see the Tetteh Quarshie interchange and such a weedy area doesn’t speak well for our tourism.

It is worth noting that, The Department for Parks and Garden was established in 1961 by the enactment of the Local Government Act 54. In 1965, the Department was given a Ministerial status and was known as the Ministry of Parks and Gardens and Tourism. In 1966, it was reverted to a Department under the Department of Forestry. It then came under different Ministries between the years 1970 to 2000 namely Works and Housing, Local Government and Rural Development and Environment and Science. Currently, the Department is under Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.

The vision for the Department is “to establish a well-respected National Institution with progressive growth in our core and non-core mandates with the view of achieving higher standards in environmental beautification, horticultural policy development and sustainability through operational efficiency, professional and ethical conduct”. The Department will strive to provide excellent service to MDA’s, Governmental Institutions, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s), and the citizenry at large.

Their mission is to facilitate the rapid development of the horticultural potential of Ghana, for the benefit of her people through public education, effective landscape beautification, maintenance programme and conservation through competent staff and technology.


  • To develop and promote effective landscape beautification in our Cities, Towns and in the individual homes (Home Gardens).
  • To maintain and sustain all landscaped areas on our roads medians, road shoulders and all roundabouts in the Cities and Towns.
  • The routine maintenance of Prestige areas in our Cities and Towns, maintenance of all ten (10) R.C.C grounds, maintenance of Castle Gardens, State House Gardens, Flagstaff House and Peduase Lodge.

Taking the current state of affairs into considerations we may confidently say that they have not lived up to their mandate and functions over the years.

Littering could be a psychological thing and once pedestrians and passengers in vehicles see the shoulders and median of the roads bushy and weedy, they are likely to litter. However it makes it difficult to litter when the environment is well kept. The life support the Department has received should indeed lead to keeping the capital clean and free of weeds. Beautification of every city is necessary to making tourists wanting to return. If we mean business let’s make the Department of Parks and Garden work again.

Philip Gebu is a Tourism Lecturer. He is the C.E.O of FoReal Destinations Ltd, a Tourism Destinations Management and Marketing Company based in Ghana and with partners in many other countries. Please contact Philip with your comments and suggestions. Write to [email protected] / [email protected]. Visit our website at or call or WhatsApp +233(0)244295901/0264295901.Visist our social media sites Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: FoReal Destinations.

Leave a Reply