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General News of Monday, 19 February 2018

Source: dailyguideafrica.com

New chapter for Operation Vanguard

The Ghana Armed Forces have stepped up its fight against illegal mining (galamsey) in the country by intensifying the riverine operations in support of the joint task force against illegal mining – Operation Vanguard.

The intensive riverine operations, which commenced on Tuesday, February 6, 2018, is meant to “halt the activities of some recalcitrant illegal miners who have relocated their destructive activities unto major water bodies in Eastern, Western, Ashanti, Central and Brong-Ahafo Regions.”

A statement signed by the Public Relations Director of the Ghana Armed Forces, Colonel E. Aggrey-Quashie, indicated that personnel from the Ghana Navy, Army Engineers and units in the five regions, in conjunction with Operation Vanguard, are conducting simultaneous and robust military operations to destroy all floating mining equipment and flush out the illegal miners in order to halt the ongoing pollution of water bodies.

Operation Vanguard was launched by President Akufo-Addo in July 2017 after an intense media campaign which called for action to stop galamsey in the country to save water bodies and the vegetation cover.

Since it was launched, over 1,000 illegal miners have been arrested and their equipment seized, with over 340 makeshift accommodations destroyed and mining equipment, including chanfans, water pumping machines, motorcycles and tri-cycles abandoned by illegal miners, especially at Dokokyina near the Bui Dam.

According to the statement, some of the water bodies on which the riverine operations are being undertaken include Rivers Birim, Ankobra, Offin and the Bui Dam.