President John Mahama has set up a high-powered inter-ministerial taskforce to deal with the galamsey menace in the country.
The taskforce which will be led by the Lands and Mines Minister Alhaji Inusah Fuseini has the herculean task to ensure that activities of illegal small scale miners come to an end.
The committee will include the Ministers for the Interior, Defence, Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration as well as Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation.
Inaugurating the committee at the Flagstaff house President Mahama said galamsey is becoming a security threat that needs to be halted before it degenerates.
President Mahama says it is unacceptable that lives are being lost and our water bodies being destroyed as a result of activities of these illegal small scale miners.
He says the committee’s work takes immediate effect and should report on monthly bases to the Chief of Staff.
He charged the taskforce to actualize his determination to bring ‘sanity’ into the mining sector, and to also ensure that the small scale mining sector is reserved for Ghanaians.
‘I am sending a clear signal to the offending individuals and groupings that the government will not allow their activities to cause conflict, dislocation, environmental degradation and unemployment when in fact the sector should rather benefit our communities and our country.’
The president also gave directive to the committee to seize the equipment of small scale miners who have refused to register their activities and prosecute them.
Foreigners caught engaging in small scale mining should be deported, the president ordered.
He also asked the taskforce to revoke the license of Ghanaians who have subleased their concessions to foreigners.