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President Nana Akufo-Addo banned all forms of illegal mining in the Ghana by both indigenes and expatriates to prevent the continuous pollution of water bodies and the loss of human lives in the country.
The Ban on illegal small-scale mining took effect from March 2017.
Solomon Owusu, who is also known as Citizen Vigilante at Large is unhappy that years after the ban, foreigners are still seriously doing illegal mining in the remote areas of Ghana.
“The purpose of the ban was to use the ‘stop and fix’ approach to ensure that pragmatic measures were put in place to address the environmental degradation aspect of small-scale mining so that the miners’ operations would be conducted in environmentally friendly manner. The Ghanaian licensed miners agreed and adhered to the order but are the foreigners too obeying the ban orders?” Owusu asked.
The ardent environmental conservation advocate paid glowing tributes to President Nana Akufo-Addo and the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, John Peter Amewu, for thinking about posterity and the safety of the environment, plant and animal life and the local Ghanaian miners for their unflinching obedience to the ban.
He said “the ban has lasted for one year, four months and the Ghanaian licensed miners are at home unemployed, meanwhile, the Chinese guys who are unauthorized to operate small-scale mining in Ghana are still working illegally.”
He lamented that Just after the ban last year, some Chinese guys were arrested, including Aisha Wuang. After one year of the ban (From March 2018), the operation vanguard are still arresting them. “Are Chinese guys in prison now for breaching our rules?” he questioned, saying Ghanaians are rather serving jail terms.
“After one year of the ban, everyone should visit River Offin, River Prah, . Also, let’s follow the trend on how the Chinese guys have been arrested amidst operations vanguard actions,” Owusu further noted.
He is much convinced that foreign illegal miners are having the backing of prominent Ghanaians in position, insisting that there is no way an expatriate can mine illegally in Ghana without support and supervision.
He gave out statistics that on April 05 2017, seven Chinese were arrested, April 10 2017, four Chinese were also arrested. Also on May 26, June 04, July 09, July 19, 2018 a total of seventeen foreigners were arrested.
He charged the inter-ministerial committee on small-scale mining to be up and doing to ensure fairness among locals and foreigners as it appears they are failing to execute the responsibilities assigned them as a Committee.
Source: Emmanuel Adu Gyamfi