The Minister for Information Hon Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has stated that anyone who return to the water bodies to engage in illegal small scale mining fondly known as (galamsey) will have themselves to blame for the consequences of their action.
According to the him, about 200 officers of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) on Wednesday morning began an operation to forcefully remove all persons and logistics involved in illegal mining on the country’s river bodies.The exercise began on River Pra in the Western and Central regions.
This according to the Minister of Information, is in furtherance of the resolutions of the final communique issued after the two-day Stakeholders Dialogue on Small Scale Mining held in Accra.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, April 28, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said the move is “to ensure that mining within water bodies is immediately stopped”.
He further indicated that the Ministry of Defence and GAF will provide a detailed brief on the developments and the sustainability efforts on Friday, April 30.
Addressing a press conference in Accra on Friday April 30, Mr Oppong Nkrumah said “Anybody who returns to these water bodies will have themselves to blame.”
On his part the Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul said President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo should be commended for the bold steps he has taken in dealing with the illegal small scale mining in spite of the effect of the attempt to deal with the situation on the number of votes he obtained in last year’s elections.
Speaking at the same press conference he said the galamsey fight is a bold decision by the president that must be commended. He further stated that equipment will be destroyed on site by the military officers deployed to the galamsey areas.He said no gadget will be returned to Accra.
“We are not seizing any equipment, no equipment will be returned home, they will all be destroyed on site. No excavator, nothing will come back home,” he said.
Mr Dominic Nitiwul who is also lawmaker for Bimbila said nobody should attempt to go back to the galamsey areas after the swoop by the men in uniform.
“When they sweep pass the place they will be constantly monitoring of what they have done by Ghana Armed Forces and so don’t think you will go back,” he said.