President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Wednesday, launched the Community Mining Programme at Wassa Akropong, in the Western Region.
The Community Mining Programme is aimed at formalising mining in selected communities across the country.
With at least one community mine expected to be set up in each of the mining districts in the country, the community mines will provide employment for more than 4,500 miners that were trained by government at the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT), Tarkwa.
Launching the pilot programme at Wassa Akropong, President Akufo-Addo stated that the Community Mining Programme will ensure that “mining will be done the right way, within the tenets of the law, and will not destroy our natural resources”.
“Today, we are launching a type of mining that will benefit all of us. I am here to plead with the young men who are participating in the community mining to do their best to adhere to all the laws and do a good job so that money will return to Wassa Amenfi. The money will come.”
He assured the programme will be replicated not only in Wassa Amenfi, but also in other towns in Ghana by September this year, and will be closely monitored to ensure that the standards that have been set for the CMP are adhered to.
The Chairperson of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining, Prof Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, indicated that the Minerals Commission has blocked out several zones in each of the mining districts for this purpose, with some traditional authorities also providing land for the CMP.
He noted that a number of large-scale mining companies have shed off areas to be used for the CMP, and, between now and September, concessions for the various CMP will be mapped out by the IMCIM mapping team and uploaded onto the Galam Stop software.
Prof Frimpong Boateng stressed that canoes fitted with outboard motors have been procured for the Riverine Team to monitor the waterbodies.
“With the rolling out of the CMP, there should be no excuse whatsoever for miners to be mining illegally in the water bodies,” he added.
The Paramount Chief of Wassa Amenfi, Tetrete Okuamoah Sekyim II observed that galamsey which was the main source of destruction of the environment in the mining areas, and through the great efforts of the President would now see a difference and bring joy to the nation.
FROM PETER GBAMBILA, DOMPIM BODIE