Feature Article of Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Columnist: Boateng, Emmanuel Agyenfra

Don't Kill Us Slowly:

The cry of residents from minig communities suffering from negative effects of mining.

Gold mining in Ghana has played a critical role in the socio-economic and political development of the past 100 years.Currently we have Oil in addition to our Gold,Bauxite,Diamond and Manganese.The Lord has been so good to us as a country we need not to even complain of poverty.

However,in recent times,the indigens of communities where mining take place are complaining bitterly over how they are been treated when it comes to benefiting from the proceeds from mining.Mining communities in the Birim North District,Upper Denkyira(Dunkwa-on-Offin) and Brong Ahafo,Kenyasi 1 and 2 are the worst affected by mining operations.

The mining companies destroy farmlands,water bodies,buildings and other valueables and tell the indigens,they will be compensated.I personally went to Afosu,Yayaso,Yaw Tano,Adawsona and Hweakwa,all these towns are in the New Abirem North District and the picture was sorry!is it their crime that government o f Ghana allowed a company to come work on their lands.

They had cracked buildings,shaky foundations,polluted water and farm lands all destroyed by mining activities.Constant complains to the company has proved futile.My question is,DO WE VALUE GOLD MORE THAN LIFE? when it come’s to employment recruiting,indigens of these communities are sidelined.

In Dunkwa-on-Offin,Chinese illegal miners have taken over completely!River Offin is loosing it’s significance due to the ill treatment been meted out to it by illegal Chinese minrers. People who drink from the river can’t drink any more. Do our leaders really care about our welfare or how we are been treated? Mining companies enjoy free tax but yet still we get nothing from our own resources. Residents in Obuasi run out of water due to the pollution of River Oda.Some towns resort to sachet water for living! Our rights are been trampled upon each and every day and there is no one to cry to.MINING COMPANIES SHOULD NOT KILL US SLOWLY!!!

BY:Emmanuel Agyenfra Boateng