‘We must all be concerned about galamsey’

The Executive Director of 5fifty Documentary Limited, Edem Srem has called on Ghanaians in urban areas to show concern about galamsey activities in the country.

According to him, though the adverse effects of galamsey is usually evident in mining communities, it somewhat impact on the economy.

Speaking to Citi News at the viewing of a documentary dubbed, ‘Galamsey, the other side’ Edem Srem said it is about time stakeholders come together to reach a mutually beneficial conclusion on the matter.

“…When you visit most of the rivers that have been polluted by the activities of galamsey, you realize that fish caught by fishermen taste sour and bitter, making it dangerous for consumption. In Accra, we always assume we are safe because we think the fresh things are brought to Accra. But the question we need to ask is; where are those fresh foods coming from?”

Mr. Srem said although the activity is illegal, the minerals obtained by the galamsey operators stay back in the country, improving the livelihood of the people and the economy.

“This galamsey guys, even though they are causing harm to the environment they actually contribute to the economy of the nation. In total they make about thirty percent of Ghana’s gold production and that is huge money for the state. If it is regulated then we can have that amount of proceeds going into the country’s coffers.”

He further explained that, whilst some of the illegal miners are willing to stop, they complain of lack of support from government.

Background

Government in collaboration with multinational mining companies has on several occasions expressed worry about the trend of Galamsey operations in the country.

Although they have tried alternative ways to wean practitioners off their dangerous trade by introducing alternative livelihood schemes in all mining communities, this approach seems to do little to discourage adventures into the pits as more and more people venture into this dangerous but lucrative activity.

By: Felicia Osei/citifmonline/Ghana

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