Illegal Mining and Chainsaw Activities

The Minerals Commission has called for efforts from District Security Councils (DISEC) and Regional Security Councils (RESEC) to fight illegal mining and chainsaw activities in their areas.   

Mr Stephen N.K. Piedu, Deputy Chief Inspector of Mines, said if these activities were not stopped sooner than later the country would be in crisis.   

He was responding to a statement by a contributor at a forum on the proposed Alluvial Gold Mining Project by Xtra Gold Mining Company at Pameng in the Atiwa District.

The public hearing was organized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to allow communities where the mining operations would take place to voice out any concerns they may have on the project.

Mr Piedu told the people that illegal mining was like armed robbery and urged them to find alternative jobs instead of degrading the environment through their illegal operations.

The contributor had appealed to the management of the company to allow them to continue with their galamsey activities on the concession until they acquire mining license from the Ministry of Lands and Forestry.   

Mr Ransford Sekyi, Deputy Director/Head of Mining of EPA, told the people that the EPA Act 490 promulgated in 1994 gave powers to the agency to access the environmental "friendliness" of mining project before license is granted.

He appealed to the people to feel free to come out with suggestions they might have concerning the proposed mining in the area.

Mr Ishaque Aidoo, Administrative Manager of Xtra Gold, said the operation would last for five years.

He explained that the project would be labour intensive and for that matter many skilled and unskilled people in the area would be employed.

Mr Aidoo assured farmers that management would negotiate with them to pay compensation for their farms that would be affected during the operations.

He said the mined out concession would be re-vegetated after the operation to allow farmers to cultivate their lands.

The people requested the company to provide them with boreholes, health centres, places of convenience, markets, nurses and teachers quarters and to rehabilitate their school buildings.

Communities to be affected in the mining operation are Pameng, Abesim, Akyem Akropong, Awenare, Ampetia and Banso.

Similar public hearing was later held at Adadietum in the East Akyem Municipality.

Source:
Ghana Districts

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