Gov’t Installs Tracking Devices To Fight Galamsey  

…Set To Be Commissioned Soon

Government, through the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, is set to commission high-tech devices that would be used to monitor and track mining activities, as well as, movement of equipment within the mining areas, across the country.

The sophisticated devices, installed at a location within the Minerals Commission, and code-named, “Situational Room” is aimed at boosting the fight against illegal mining activities notoriously known as ‘galamsey’.

The Anchor has gathered that by this arrangement, activities of miners will be closely monitored and transmitted digitally, straight to the offices of the Minerals Commission.

The latest addition to the already rolled out initiatives, is to ensure activities of miners, including illegal miners, who have become very recalcitrant, are monitored from as far as the Ministry.

It is also, to ensure that activities of these miners and their equipment are monitored and coordinated on the ground, however remotely, for the necessary action while government rakes in, the needed revenue from the sector.

A Deputy Minister of the Lands and Natural Resources, George Mireku Duker, who announced this in Kumasi on Tuesday, August 30, 2022, disclosed the initiative will officially be commissioned in the coming days.

According to the Tarkwa Nsuaem Member of Parliament (MP), the implementation of the situational room initiative will complement the deployment of river guards to permanently patrol River bodies like the Offin, Ankobra and Pra.

Recall that barely two weeks ago, some 800 changfans, generators and other mining equipment, were seized and destroyed on the Offin River alone.

The special operation was led by Mr Duker and some ant-galamsey military taskforce operating under the code-name ‘Operation Hall II’.

Mr Duker, while urging the traditional leaders and the youth, in an all-hands-on deck call, said the introduction of the Community Mining Scheme, and others are means of encouraging sustainable mining activities.

He said the quest by the government to sanitize the small-scale mining sector, to contribute sustainably to the socioeconomic development of the country, is not aimed at chalking personal glory.

Adding, it is ostensibly and rightly so, to protect and safeguard Ghana’s rich resources, for generations yet unborn.

The Deputy Minister, who said this in an address to the traditional leaders and the youth to engage them on the need to support the fight against the menace, said that there must be a collective resolve by Ghanaians that “never again should we mine in our river bodies.”

Mr Duker said such pledge should not be mere words of mouth, but should be demonstrated through effective collaboration with government.

He indicated how Ghana’s fight against illegal mining activities, has attracted other nations to come and learn, at first hand.

In an engagement with Officers of MMDA’s, chiefs and the general public in the Ashanti Region, Mr Duker stressed that the desire to ensure that future generations get access to safe water, should be motivating factor for all stakeholders to, actively, participate in the fight against illegal mining.

“We must all come together and declare that never again are we going to allow people mine in our river bodies. The good steps we are taking has caught the attention of other countries like Sudan, South Africa and Zambia, who have all been here to study our small-scale mining regime.

What is left for us to do is to protect our water bodies. We know it’s not an event and we may not be able to completely abolish illegal mining; but we can reduce it to the barest minimum. It won’t be an easy battle but we can win. Government is doing its part, we must also do ours”, Mr. Duker stressed.

His colleague Deputy Lands Minister, Benito Owusu Bio, in-charge of Forestry, in his opening remark, appealed to the traditional authorities, to provide their unflinching support to government, to enable it deal with the situation.

He stated that as custodians of lands and culture, the traditional authorities have an obligation to protect the water bodies for the future.

The Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah, in a brief remark commended the government for the fight and urged residents in the region to report illegal mining activities in their localities.

He impressed upon the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) to help eradicate the canker, in order to save the region’s future.

Duker also addressed questions and comments from the Chiefs, DISEC, Officers of the MMDA’s and gave the firm assurance that the government will not give up on the fight against illegal Mining.


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