Collective action needed to stop gold smuggling – Mireku Duker

A Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, George MirekuDuker, has called for collective action to stop gold smuggling and other menace impeding the growth of Ghana’s mining sector.

He said the practice was inimical to the government’s plan to make the Community Mining Scheme (CMS) programme the pillar of Ghanaian participation in the mining space and support them to grow into big mining firms. 

He explained that the government’s strategies targeted at transforming the mining sector would be fruitless if the illegalities in the small-scale mining sector were allowed to continue.

Inaugurating the Wassa East District Mining Committee at Daboase yesterday, MrDuker urged Ghanaians to support government’s efforts in clamping down on practices that threaten the growth of the mining sector. 

“All these commendable ideas of government would be fruitless if activities such as gold-smuggling and illegal mining are not stopped,” he added.

Chaired by Emmanuel Boakye, the Chief Executive of Wassa East District Assembly, other members of the committee are Nana KwabenaAmpomah, representative of the Wassa Traditional Council; Jones Benjamin Tawiah, representative of the Assembly; Moses Kpebu, officer of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); Isaac Nwimbele, Inspectorate Division of the Minerals Commission and Bright Arko, District Office, Minerals Commission.

The Deputy Minister said the Committee had been mandated to promote responsible, viable and safer mining methods. 

The Committee, he said, was expected to act in accordance with the dictates of the law and not show any form of compromise or bias. 

“The composition is rich and I believe you are determined to believe that on your mandate, confidence is so high and I believed you’ll go by the tenet that established the committee,” he stated.

As a leading producer of gold, MrDuker said, it was vital that the citizenry of Ghana benefit from the resources for improved lives and livelihoods.

“As a leading gold producer in Africa, we must ensure that whatever is generated from the mining space must be used for the benefit of the citizenry.

“We have commissioned this committee to ensure that more of the small-scale mining sector is streamlined and beneficial to the people of this district and Ghana as a whole. We want to use gold and our resource to develop the country,” he stated. 

On behalf of the Committee, Mr Boakye pledged to work assiduously to ensure that sanity prevailed in the community mining scheme programme. 

In furtherance of the objectives of decentralising the regulation of mining activities in the country, the Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources in charge of Mining, MrDuker is inaugurating mining committees across all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in the country. 

FROM CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS, DABOASE

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