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General News of Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Source: classfmonline.com

Your $100bn can’t buy River Pra – Braimah to China

Sulemana Braimah, Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), has said no amount of money granted Ghana by China can compensate for the pollution of Ghana’s water bodies through illegal mining (galamsey) activities involving Chinese nationals, hence the government will fight the problem to its end.

According to him, no amount of threat to cut aid and loans to Ghana will stampede the government in the fight against the menace.

His comments come a few days after the China mission in Ghana expressed disconcertion at the manner in which Ghana’s media are reporting the onslaught on Chinese galamseyers.

In a letter sent to Ghana’s Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, the Chinese government expressed concerns about “defamatory” reports by the local media against Chinese officials and their government.

"The Chinese side is very concerned about this unhealthy tendency,” the letter said, adding: “We hope the Ghanaian government will pay due attention to this situation, take necessary action to stop such things from happening,” the letter said.

"The Chinese government attaches great importance to the illegal mining issue. The position of the Chinese government on this issue is consistent and clear-cut. The Chinese is firmly opposed to the involvement of Chinese citizens in illegal mining in Ghana and supports the efforts taken by the Ghanaian government to tackle the illegal mining issue within the legal framework.

"We sincerely hope that the Ghanaian government shall take responsibility of guiding the media and requesting them not to publicise such defamatory reports or stories against Chinese leaders, officials and the Chinese government. This will help create a sound environment for our joint efforts to address this issue and the continuous development of our bilateral relations," the mission complained.

But reacting to these words in a Facebook post on Monday April 10, Mr Braimah said: “China is to Chinese; Ghana is to Ghanaians. Relations between the two countries is very important but must be based on mutual respect and mutual benefits.

“No amount of grants can create a single river. A $100billion cannot create River Pra or Ankobra. And no amount of funds can equal the benefits rivers Ankobra, Pra, etc. to past, present and future generations. Let no one threaten us in our own country for seeking to preserve our country. Grants don't create rivers!”