Operation Vanguard arrests man, 8 minors

The Operation Vanguard Western Forward Operating Base, on Wednesday , arrested nine people at  an illegal mining (galamsey) site, at  K9,  at the  Mpohor  District of the Western Region, during a dawn  operation.

They were eight minors, aged between 15 and 17, and Seth Adjei Boahen, 29,- were grabbed by personnel of the Operation Vanguard, as part of the campaign to clamp down on  illegal mining in countrywide.

The Public Relations Officer of Operation Vanguard, Squadron Leader Robinson Omane Agyei, in a statement copied to the Ghanaian Times, said Boahen had  been  sent to Mpohor District Police Station, to assist in investigations,  whilst the minors were handed  over  to the Department of Social Welfare at Mpohor.

He said the team seized two excavators and handed them over to the Mpohor District Assembly.

Squadron Leader Agyei said the team  destroyed three excavators, three  control boards and monitor, motorcycles, nine water pumping machines and  45 changfas.

He stressed that other seized items were handed over to the Mpohor District Police for further investigation and possible prosecution.

Squadron Leader Agyei reiterated government’s commitment to regularising the mining sector, explaining that Operation Vanguard was formed to clamp down on illegal miners.

He noted that whiles some small-scale miners had stopped their activities, others were being recalcitrant, warning that “Operation Vanguard is coming at those recalcitrant illegal miners.”

Squadron Leader Agyei said “For now, the use of minors in their activity is worrying, and this is also against the labour laws. The minors, who engage in illegal mining should note that they are being used for the gain of a few and is better for them to seek alternative government jobs or just go into farming  rather than illegal mining.” he told the Ghanaian Times.

He assured that the team would respect human rights, by protecting minors, who engaged illegal mining and other hazardous work.

Squadron Leader Agyei appealed to Ghanaians to support the fight against galamsey   adding that “this will allow the government to regularise  and   sustain mining for  the benefit of the Ghanaian economy.”



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