Ghana develops systems to check illegality in gold trading

The Minerals Commission has developed a traceability system for all gold mined and exported from Ghana.

According to George Mireku Duker, Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, the system conforms to international best practices aimed at addressing illegalities in the area of gold trading, adding that “it would further Ghana’s interest in the mining sector.”

 He said the traceability system was to complement efforts to stop the smuggling of gold by miners to neighbouring countries.

 Mr Duker said the Precious Mineral Marketing Company (PMMC) was the only firm mandated by law to “assay gold” and that anyone found to have circumvent the laid down protocols would be dealt with in accordance with the law. 

The Deputy Minister was speaking at Tarkwa in the Western Region during the inauguration of the Tarkwa-Nsuaem District Mining Committee.

Chaired by Benjamin Kesse, Chief Executive of the Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Assembly, other members of the Committee include Nana Adupanyin, Representative of Traditional Council, Augustine Quaicoe, Representative of the Assembly, Bright Kpebu, Representative of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Bright Arko, District Officer, Minerals Commission.

He said the main mandate of the District Mining committee was to ensure that Mining was done responsibly and in accordance with the Minamata Convention. 

The Minamata Convention on Mercury is the most recent global agreement on environment and health adopted in 2013. 

Since it entered into force on August 16, 2017, Parties have been working together to control the mercury supply and trade, reduce the use, emission and release of mercury, raise public awareness, and build the necessary institutional capacity to protect human health and the environment.

The Deputy Minister charged the committee to ensure the transformation of community mining into businesses that could attract investors, thereby creating multinational companies out of the programme.  

Mr Duker, who doubles as the Member of Parliament for Tarkwa-Nsuaem, also appealed to large scale mining companies to cede part of their concessions to the communities for community mining.

This, he said, could contribute to the creation of peaceful coexistence, as well as the needed partnerships to ensure the full benefits of mining was realised.

On behalf of the Committee, Mr Kesse said it would work closely with the Ministry to engage the large-scale mining companies on the matter on concessions in promoting the community mining programme for the larger benefits of the locals.

 He pledged that the Committee would work in accordance with its mandate to discharge their duties without fear or favour.

FROM CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS, TARKWA

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