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Regional News of Monday, 21 June 2021

Source: Thomas Tetteh, Contributor

Pay attention to roads in mining communities-Ghana Mineworkers Union to gov't

National Executive Council Member of the Ghana Mineworkers Union, Blay Thompson National Executive Council Member of the Ghana Mineworkers Union, Blay Thompson

The Ghana Mineworkers Union is calling on the government to pay attention to the poor state of the road network in mining communities in Ghana by ensuring that mining communities and their catchments realize the full benefits of the Minerals Development Fund which is instituted to assist address this glaring infrastructural deficit within mining communities.

Addressing the media in Tarkwa to begin the maiden celebration of the Annual Mineworkers’ Week, the National Executive Council Member of the Union, Comrade Blay Thompson, asked the government to pay much attention to the Damang-Akyempim road, Dunkwa-Ayanfuri road, Bogoso-Damang road, Bogoso-Prestea road, and the Tarkwa-Takoradi road.

He noted that the significant role and contribution of Tarkwa and its catchment communities including Akyempim, Bogoso, Prestea and Nsuta, to the mining fortunes of Ghana dates to history and therefore cannot go unnoticed.

He added that, within the Tarkwa enclave alone, there are seven giant large-scale producing mining companies including Gold Fields Tarkwa, Anglo Gold Ashanti Iduapriem, Abosso Gold Fields, Golden Star Resources, Future Global Resources, Ghana Manganese Company and Adamus Resources.

Mr Blay Thompson explained that the concentration of these seven large-scale mining companies within the same region which are in close proximity to each other is undoubtedly a unique feature and one that can hardly be seen anywhere across the globe.

“Comrades, in 2019 alone, total mineral revenue from producing mining companies according to the Ghana Chamber of Mines stood at 4.6 billion dollars. Out of this amount, these 7 producing mining companies within Tarkwa and its catchment accounted for 2.2 billion dollars, and which represents 49 percent of total mineral revenue for that year.

Similarly in 2020, total mineral revenue from producing mining companies stood at 5.1 billion dollars with these same 7 producing companies accounting for 2.4 billion dollars representing about 48 percent of total mineral revenue. From the foregoing, it goes without saying that Tarkwa and its catchment communities contributes about 50 percent of the annual total mineral revenue and by extension 50 percent of the mining sector’s contribution to total exports earnings and the Gross Domestic Product of Ghana,” Blay Thompson stated.

According to him, despite these gains from these mining communities and Ghana’s current place as the largest producer of gold in Africa, modern-day Ghana continue to experience disappointing results in translating this mineral wealth into broad economic development for the benefit of its citizenry especially communities like Tarkwa, Bogoso, Akyempim, Damang and Prestea, which are host to these deposits.

He stated that after several decades of mining in Tarkwa, Bogoso, Damang, Prestea, Akyempim, and Ayanfuri, these communities remain shantytowns with very deplorable road network.

The commemoration of the maiden Annual Mineworkers’ Week begins today Monday, June 21, 2021 and ends on Friday, June 25, 2021on the theme; Integrating Labour and Community Interest for Socioeconomic Development.

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