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General News of Sunday, 2 October 2022

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

‘Who is in control from district to national level?’ – Otumfuo laments galamsey ‘albatross’

Nana Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II play videoNana Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II

Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II has described the galamsey menace as an albatross around the neck of the nation and is calling for a concerted effort to root out illegal small-scale mining (‘galamsey’).

Whiles granting audience to the United States ambassador at the Manhyia Palace, the Asantehene lamented the adverse impact of the illegal operation on different aspects of individual and national life.

In a footage shared by Opemsuo Radio and sighted by GhanaWeb, Asantehene also questioned why the security apparatus in these 'galamsey' areas and the taskforce set up by the government have failed to stop the menace.

“Galamsey is an albatross on our necks, it is rather unfortunate that it has happened this way. Ghana was known as the Gold Coast and therefore it was known. But during that time, it wasn’t like the galamsey that we are talking about,” he stated.

He explained that the small-scale mining of decades back was the menial ones, stressing that in contemporary times, the unfortunate use of equipment and carelessness of environmental implication has become a headache. “But who is control from district to national level,” he quizzed.

He continued: “The government set up the military cum police to do it, why have we not been able to stop it. Why? That is the point, why have we not been able to stop it?” he emphasized.

He intimated that small-scale mining was something that had been done for serval years but never to the detriment of the environment.

Wontumi’s company embroiled in ‘galamsey’ war

Meanwhile, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, has directed the Forestry Commission to cease the operations of Akonta Mining Company in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve of the Amenfi West Municipal Assembly.

According to a statement issued by the Public Affairs of the Ministry on Friday, September 30, 2022, the Company owned by the ruling NPP Chairman for Ashanti Region, Bernard Antwi Boasiako, alias Wontumi, has been engaging in mining activities in the forest without a permit.

“The attention of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has been drawn to publications about certain operations by Akonta Mining Limited in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve in the Amenfi West Municipality in the Western Region.

“Records available to the Ministry shows that while Akonta Mining Ltd has a mining lease to undertake mining operations in some parts of Samreboi, outside the Forest Reserve, the company has no mineral right to undertake any mining operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve,” the statement said.

According to the Ministry, while Akonta Mining Company had applied for a permit to mine in the said forest reserve, the Minister had yet to give approval to any such application hence rendering the activities of the firm in the said forest reserve illegal.

Watch Otumfuo's interview in the video below:





IB/SARA

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