9:29, 20.Oct 2016
Apostle Samuel Antwi, General Secretary of the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council, has urged all stakeholders to press on with the fight against illicit mining activities, popularly known as galamsey, in Ghana.
According to him, the situation at hand is a deadly one that requires an aggressive posture in ending it, hence the need to sustain the current campaign against the problem.
As part of the fight against galamsey, about 400 earth-moving equipment have been voluntarily withdrawn from various illegal small-scale mining sites across the country, John Peter Amewu, Lands and Natural Resources Minister, has revealed.
He told Chief Jerry Forson on Accra100.5FM’s breakfast show on Wednesday 19 April that the heavy equipment are, however, yet to be handed over to the Ministry.
“We have had some reports that are quite encouraging, about voluntary withdrawal of some of the earth-moving equipment at the sites,” he said.
Mr Amewu, whose 21-day ultimatum to the galamseyers to pack out ends this week, said: “I expect that at the end of today, there will be a total withdrawal.
“What will follow,” he said, “is that… of course some element of force will need to be applied.”
According to him, “it is clear that the lawlessness can no longer continue. It’s total lawlessness, it has nothing to do with the mining regulatory framework, and, if, of course its lawlessness, we need to apply the law.”
Mr Amewu is currently undertaking a review tour of all galamsey sites in the country in the Eastern, Western and Central Regions, after which he will take a definitive decision about the next line of action.
Speaking on these developments in an interview on Accra100.5FM on Friday April 21, Apostle Antwi said: “We need to commend everybody including journalists, pastors and all politicians who have come together to fight the problem. This is a serious issue that we are confronted with.
“We strongly believe that the steps taken by the Akufo-Addo government towards the menace is a step in the right direction. The minister we all see is working tirelessly to ensure that the problem reduces drastically, if not totally eradicated. We are appealing to teachers in the mining communities, pastors, and everybody to support the fight against galamsey.
“We need to expose the dangers associated with galamsey and how those dangers affect us as a nation.”