General News of Monday, 31 July 2017
Members of the taskforce on illegal mining will be severely sanctioned if they allow themselves to be compromised in their line of duty, the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Prof Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng has warned.
“Let me give you a word of advice, some of you may be tempted with monies and other valuable gifts but remember that what is at stake is more than your individual interest. I urge you to remain focused because those who will be compromised shall be severely sanctioned,” he said.
Prof Frimpong-Boateng who chairs the Inter-ministerial Taskforce on Illegal Mining, said this Monday at the launch of “Operation Vanguard”, the joint military and police taskforce established to enforce the ban on illegal mining, alias galamsey.
Outlining the mode of operation of the taskforce, Prof Frimpong-Boateng said the initial deployment will be in the three most affected regions, namely the Eastern, Western and Ashanti.
He noted that with time, the taskforce would be deployed to other regions affected by illegal mining.
The taskforce is expected to remain in the affected areas until the degraded lands and rivers are restored and reforestation programme is undertaken.
Thereafter, another team to be made up of personnel from the Ghana Navy and Marine Police would be deployed to take up the monitoring of the major rivers and water bodies until illegal activities are completely eradicated.
“This may take several months, perhaps years… [But] let no one think that this is going to be a nine day wonder,” Prof Frimpong-Boateng noted.