Court orders restoration of Takoradi Gold Ghana lease

The Tarkwa High Court has ordered that the lease of Takoradi Gold Ghana Limited on the Kutukrom Concession at Prestea in the Western Region should be restored to the company.
The court awarded cost of GHc10,000 for the plaintiff, and ruled that the decision of  the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources to freeze the  operations  of Takoradi Gold Ghana Limited  at the Kutukrom Concession, was capricious and unfair.
Granting the reliefs sought by plaintiff, last Wednesday, the High Court presided by Judge, Mr. Justice K. A Ofori-Atta, noted that the 1992 Constitution imposes a duty on persons exercising discretionary powers to be fair and candid.
The court said that there were  no evidence that the minister complied with   the law by  indicating that a  notice  on the  breach  of the  mining lease  was  given to the plaintiff, which required remedy.
The  judge said that  unless the holder surrenders its  mineral right, the law  imposed an obligation on the minister, prior to the suspension or cancellation of mineral right, to notify it  of  the alleged  breaches, stressing that “otherwise the suspension  or cancellation  of the  mineral right is  unlawful.”
He observed that: “The law makers so provided for good reason. The mining industry is generally capital intensive. Having invested so much into the business it would be unfair to be  deprived of the mineral right without as much  notice of breach if any and a demand for remedy, thereby losing all that has been invested  in it.
Justice Ofori-Atta noted that when the plaintiff’s prospecting licence expired in 2009, she applied for a renewal and the application was granted  based  on the recommendation of the Minerals Commission and did same  on September 16, 2011.
Meanwhile, he added that, a letter from the Minerals Commission directed the plaintiff to make certain payments as conditions for the renewal, observing that since the granting of the licence to Takoradi Gold, it has spent about $3,700,000 on its activities.

FROM CLEMENT ADZEI BOYE, TARKWA

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