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Thursday, January 27, 2022

Akufo-Addo distributing excavators like ‘kelewele’ – Edem Agbana

Edem Agbana, Deputy Youth Organizer of the NDCEdem Agbana, Deputy Youth Organizer of the NDC

‘Galamsey’ is a local term used in Ghana for illegal or unregulated gold mining operations.

Between 2017 and 2018, during the height of the fight against the phenomenon, the then Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Mr John Peter Amewu, ordered that any machines or equipment that may be chanced upon at any galamsey site be seized.

Over 200 excavators were seized during the process.

During the recent parliamentary hearing, Samuel Abu Jinapor minister for Lands and Natural Resources said, one of his top priorities is to put an end to galamsey, emphasising his determination to regulate the sector and protect the environment.

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But according to the Deputy Youth Organizer of the National Democratic Congress, Edem Agbana, those seized excavators were taken from the original owners and shared like ‘kelewele’ among the NPP Party executives.

Citing some NPP members, Edem Agbana claimed that rather than fight the menace plaguing the country, the governing party was robbing Peter to pay Paul by handing over the seized equipment to party members.

He said “Excavators that were seized were taken away from the original owners and shared like kelewele among NPP executives for them to go back to the field and still engage in the galamsey and that is why we still have these problem of galamsey today and this water bodies are been destroyed”.

Agbana also asserted that instead of fighting the problem of small-scale mining, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his government were only interested in replacing the indigenes in the galamsey business with the NPP Party executives and that there was no fight against galamsey in the first four years of the NPP.

“Instead of fighting the problem of small-scale mining, President Akufo-Addo and his government were only interested in replacing the indigenes and the illegal small-scale miners with party apparatchiks”.

According to Isaac Karikari, a director at the lands and natural resources ministry, the recovering lands and waterbodies destroyed by galamsey would cost the country an estimated US$2.3 billion in 2016.

He made this statement during a presentation at an interactive session with heads of African Diplomatic missions in Accra in May 2017.

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