Desist from illegal mining – Hajia Alima Mahama cautions MMDCEs

Hajia Alima Mahama,Minister of Local Government and Rural Development

Hajia Alima Mahama,Minister of Local Government and Rural Development

The Minister of Local  Government and Rural Development ( LGRD) Hajia  Alima  Mahama  has cautioned Metropolitan, Municipal  and District  Chief Executive (MMDCEs) to desist  from engaging in  illegal mining, saying “if you are into galamsey stop it.”

She said there were reports that some of them were engaged in the illegal act  adding “ the reports  we are getting  from the field  is not pleasant  at all,” and questioned the rationale behind their involvement, and said, “at the right time we will name and shame those involved in illegal mining.”

Hajia Mahama gave the warning at as a day’s retreat organised for the   MMDCEs on the road map for lifting the ban on artisanal and small-scale mining and the way forward.

She queried: “Why should any of you be engaged in galamsey? Don’t think you can do anything and hide.”

Hajia Mahama told them that “the government has a long arm, whatever you do, the Chief of Staff, and for that matter, the President will know; even when you say it in words, they will know, so you cannot do anything and think you can sneak.”

She said at the right time, “the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining will name those involved in illegal mining and those not doing their best in the fight against illegal mining.”

Hajia Mahama said if MMDCEs do not change and reports were received about their conducts, they would be sacked, because they do not want to support in transforming the nation.

“I have asked the chairman of the committee to hold on with the names, but we are going to put the national security on you,” she said

Hajia Mahama said that they could not think about the short term gains and compromise the long term gains to be derived by the nation.

She said the MMDCEs send signals to the people through their actions, making them have the impression that the government was not serious about the fight against galamsey, “but if through your attitude and actions the people feel we are not serious about it, then the implementation is going to be thwarted.”

She advised them to work hard in the fight against illegal mining and leave a legacy of providing portable drinking water and a good environment for their people.

The Chief of Staff Madam Akosua Frema Osei-Opare called on the MMDCEs to help stop the menace of illegal mining and also avoid participating in the negative act in whatever form.

She said failure to adhere to the policy was not an option, saying “if you don’t want to be part of this important assignment, we will also not allow you to derail our efforts.”

Madam Osei-Opare was of the view that, it would only take the resilience of government to buy into the President’s goal of not only preserving the  country’s rich biodiversity  for present and future  generations, but also  in the prevention of  disease and death of vulnerable in the mining  communities and beyond.

BY JEMIMA ESINAM KUATSINU

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