General News of Tuesday, 1 August 2017
Workers of Owere Mines at Konongo in the Ashanti region have picketed at the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources to mount pressure on government to act on illegal mining activities they say is ongoing at the mines which is under care and maintenance.
The workers in an earlier petition in April 2017 complained that their salaries have not been paid for the past 19 months and wanted government to impress on the management to pay them.
But speaking to Graphic Online Tuesday morning, Mr Seth Larbi, Chairman of the Local Union said government was yet to respond to their earlier petition hence the need to picket at the Ministry Tuesday morning.
There are 65 workers currently in the employ of the company which was put under care and maintenance in 2013 to look for new investors.
“We have come to the realisation that if we don’t come to Accra, our grievances would never be resolved. Our managers are behind the ongoing illegal mining in the premises of the mines and unless the ministry intervene, there would no end in sight,” Mr Francis Owusu, branch union secretary told Graphic Online.
The miners have accused the Asante Akyem Central Municipal Assembly and the Police of doing little to curb ‘galamsey’ on their mining concession.
They accused the assembly and the police of watching galamseyers to continue to encroach on the concession, destroying lands and water bodies.
There is underground mining activities ongoing on the site and according to the workers, if no action was taken as soon as possible, the whole town will wake up one day to a collapsed community, because the pillars which support the town is what the galamseyers were said to be working on, the workers said.