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Business News of Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Source: citifmonline.com

Mining firm sues Lands Ministry, others over withdrawal of license

Gold Ghana Limited, a small scale mining firm in the Western Region, has sued the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources at the Tarkwa High Court for terminating a Mineral Prospecting License granted it by the ministry in 2013, after the company had applied for renewal of its license in 2011.

Other parties sued include the Minerals Commission, the Attorney General and another small scale mining firm, DIHAO Investment Limited.

According to the plaintiff, in a suit filed at the Tarkwa High Court, the Lands and Natural Resource Ministry failed to communicate the termination of its Minerals Prospecting License after it had applied for renewal in September 2011, and followed up with all statutory payments associated with the renewal.

The Minerals Commission, according to the plaintiff in a letter dated 3rd November 2013, recommended to the Lands Ministry to renew the license of Takoradi Gold Ghana Limited. But, the renewal never happened until a letter dated 23rd October, 2013, was received by the plaintiff, announcing that his request for renewal had been rejected by the ministry.

According to the plaintiff, it was later discovered that the concession which is at Kutukrom/Nsuta, has been granted to a Chinese firm DIHAO Investment Limited. All attempts according to the plaintiff to get the ministry to correct the anomaly have proven futile.

The plaintiff is therefore seeking among other things an order compelling the Lands and Natural Resources Ministry and the Minerals Commission, to renew the prospecting license for the concessional area under contention, and a perpetual injunction restraining the Lands and Natural Resource Ministry, the Minerals Commission, and DIHAO Investment Limited from interfering with the plaintiff’s quiet enjoyment and use of its prospecting licensed area at Kutukrom.

Since the hearing of the case was opened, DIHAO Investment Limited, which was also expected to open its defence has since July 2016, failed to appear in court.

The Tarkwa High Court, presided over by A.A Ofori Atta, closed any opportunity for their defence after the 6th July deadline was issued to them.

The court is however expected to pronounce its ruling on the case when the case is recalled on June 27, 2017.