Big Stone Mining To Be Shut Down If…
Management of Big Stone Mining Limited,a large-scale tailing processing firm, at Bogoso in the Western Region, has been directed, as a matter of urgency,to address all health and safety issues at its concession or risk being shutdown.
This is after the company’s main site was discovered in a messy state and considered to be blatant disregard for health and safety protocols outlined in the licenses granted the firm.
Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources in charge of Mines, George Mireku Duker, who witnessed the situation during a visit to the company on Thursday, April 6, 2023, charged the management to do the right thing.
Describing the development at the company as an eyesore, he warned that the ministry, as well as Minerals Commission, will not sit unconcerned for companies to flout the laws of the country with impunity.
“I’ve seen things that I’m not happy with in terms of your health and safety protocols. This place doesn’t befit the status of large-scale concession and that must be immediately addressed. The environment is already weedy and if this is the headquarters of Big Stone where your administrative offices are then it’s an eyesore,” he said.
Mr. Duker, who was not happy about the situation, reminded the company of its responsibility of ensuring the safety its workers. He directed the staff of the Minerals Commission, who were part of his delegation, to ensure that the company complies with the order.
“I will ask my technical officers to immediately act on that. I cannot fathom why I should come and meet this situation. We are mandated by the LI to shut your operations based on what we are seeing here,” he cautioned.
He also tasked the company to build a strong relationship with the communities in its catchment areas, stressing that this could be done through a committed application of the company’s Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR).
“The mandate of this company should not be only getting gold out of the soil, it must also be your responsibility to create enabling and serene environment for your workers. It is important to ensure that you have a closer and deeper relationship with the community in which you work.
“We are here to streamline and get the best practice out of this company. If you are determined to work in this country then you must be ready to obey the rules and regulations of this country. You must work under the dictates of Act 703,” he said.
Mr. Duker assured the company that government is focused on implementing policies and programs that will facilitate the smooth operations of mining companies.
He, therefore, urged them to support government by adhering to the mining laws and undertaking development projects in various communities.
The Plant Manager of Big Stone, Mr. Mawulolom Kudjo Nokufou, disclosed that, since its establishment, the company has been saddled with some challenges.
He however noted with confidence that the visit by the deputy ministeris indicative of government’s interest in the company, and that he is convinced that the issues confronting the firm will be addressed expeditiously.