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General News of Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Source: Graphic.com.gh

Government to honour chiefs, traditional areas that are 'galamsey free'

The government will honour chiefs and traditional areas that are able to keep their areas "galamsey free”.

In line with this, the Ministry of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs has begun a sensitisation programme to galvanise chiefs across the country to support the fight against galamsey.

The Deputy Minister of Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr Paul Essien, said this was to motivate chiefs and traditional authorities to work to keep the resources of the country safe.

Mr Essien was on a four-day working visit to the Central Region.

He asked chiefs not to engage in illegal mining since that would make them dishonour their royal stools.

"Don't be enticed by monies to destroy our lands which have been handed over to us by our forefathers," he stated.

“Our system has become so liberal that it’s affecting the fight against galamsey,” he observed.

He reminded chiefs that they were the major custodians of the land and caretakers of the water and other resources and appealed to them to rise and protect their resources for posterity.

Allowances

Mr Essien said the ministry was working to ensure all gazetted chiefs were given allowances to support their efforts.

The Deputy Minister of the Central Region, Mr Thomas Yaw Adjei Baffour, said the government would not relent in the fight against galamsey considering its devastating effects on the environment.

He appealed to the chiefs to commit to the effort to save the nation's farmlands and water bodies from total destruction.

The Omanhene of Effutu called for direct engagement with the people engaged in illegal mining.

The chiefs

Some chiefs admitted that some of them engaged in the practice to support their areas and appealed for financial support for that purpose.

They also called for a task force to support the fight in the communities.