Galamsey: Name officials responsible for disappearance of seized excavators – Groups demand

The Media Coalition against Illegal Mining and Occupy Ghana are demanding that the government provides explanations for the disappearance of some excavators that were seized from illegal miners.

Their statement stems from a comment by the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong that dozens of Galamsey excavators that were seized have disappeared from the district assemblies where they were being kept.

According to the two organisations, the authorities responsible for ensuring sanity within the mining sector have failed to enforce the law.

Convenor of the Media Coalition against Galamsey, Ken Ashigbey said persons behind the disappearance should be named to ensure they are sanctioned.

“If we don’t ensure that the laws that we have are working, then the impunity will continue. How come some of the excavators cannot be found? It is also important that we know which public officers or individuals are responsible for this. That is something that we need answers for,” he said.

Excavators kept from assemblies

In November 2019, the Inter-Ministerial Committee Task Force on Illegal Mining refused to hand over seized excavators to the Municipal Assemblies.

Some Municipal Chief Executives asked for the earth-moving machines to be released to them so they could use them to solve flood-related issues in the assemblies.

MCE for Assin North, Nicholas Fiifi Baako, for instance, called for the discharge of the seized excavators for desilting and dredging of rivers to prevent flooding.

But the Head of the Task Force, Francis Asibi Abu, said the MCE’s suggestion was unwarranted until a request is made by the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO).