The Deputy Executive Secretary for pressure group, Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) has described government’s fight against illegal mining in the country as “unprecedented” which should be hailed by all Ghanaians.
Wesley Owusu, who was speaking on Dwaboase on Power 97.9FM, on Friday noted that before the president assumed power, the canker had caused more destruction to arable lands, and water bodies to a crescendo that was life-threatening.
His comments follow government’s announcement of an extension on the ban on illegal mining otherwise known as ‘Galamsey’.
The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Mr Peter Amewu, who disclosed the extension of the ban last Wednesday,March 7, 2018 in Accra, said the decision was, basically, because government had not met its target in the campaign against the menace.
“The ban has invariably been extended because we haven’t lifted it, we met with the Small-Scale Mining Association and clearly, our targets have not been met, and so we expect some level of collaboration, which the Association is closely working with us,” the Minister posited
Despite calls from some Small Scale Miners to lift the ban, Wesley Owusu argued that the government’s fierce combat against illegal mining needs to be commended rather than condemned, because its impact will be felt by generations.
“The legacy of Akufo-Addo will resonate for generations. The president’s position on the fight against galamsey means he is a man dedicated to make Ghana succeed,” he added.
To him, before the New Patriotic Party government took over, some officials closer to the then government sponsored the act which strengthened people to plow lands with impunity, adding president Akufo-Addo had to take a bold decision to halt the act and restructure it into a “small scale mining which will be regulated and monitored to save our lands.”
“Tell me, which president in this republic has fought galamsey head on as Akufo-Addo?” he quizzed and added the President made sure the right thing was put in place to save the environment.
Buttressing his point that the extended ban not will rip people off their livelihoods as being bandied, Wesley said there have been pragmatic steps government has put in place to regulate small scale mining, therefore people should not jump into conclusion that the government is imposing hardship on the small scale miners.
“’Stop Galamsey now’ was a full project supported by government. Is that no enough fight against galamsey? Is that not enough to show that this man [the president] is committed to ending any form of illegal mining?” he said to the host, Kaakyire Kwesi Appea-Apraku, who wanted to know if government was committed to the illegal mining fight.