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Monday, May 23, 2022

Conduct full-scale investigation into Apiate disaster

Associate Executive Director for WACAM, Hannah Owusu-Koranteng

Two entities, Wacam and CEIA are calling on the government and relevant agencies to conduct full-scale investigation into the explosion that occurred on Thursday, 20th January 2022 at Apiate.

A vehicle conveying explosives to Chirano Mining Company exploded at Apiate community after colliding with a motor cycle.

The explosives detonated, setting the whole town ablaze, killing and maiming scores of residents as well as destroying properties of the residents.

It has been confirmed that 13 have died while almost 160 were injured.

In a joint press statement, Wacam and CEIA expressed their deepest condolence to the Chiefs and people of Apiate community who have lost their loved ones.

“We wish those who were injured a speedy recovery. We also commend Government for immediately activating the National Emergency Response Mechanism to address the situation. We salute the gallant men and women from Ghana Police Service, Fire Service, Ghana Armed Forces, NADMO, National Ambulance Service, Staff of Ghana Health Service in the affected area as well as the entire citizens who assisted in bringing relief to the affected people,” the two stated.

Wacam and CEIA further commended the Churches in the area, particularly the Catholic Parish in Bogoso for releasing their church hall to be used in accommodating the displaced residents from the community.

Meanwhile, they said, “Wacam and CEIA recognising that it is too early to officially establish the root cause of this tragic incident, call on government and relevant agencies to conduct full-scale investigation into the incident.”

They were of the belief that the people of Apiate and the nation could have been spared the agony of the incident that had shocked the whole nation and its related damage if due precaution had been exercised and the safety provisions in the Minerals and Mining (Explosives) Regulations, 2012 ( LI 2177) had been adhered to in the transport of the explosives.

“Our call for responsible mining practices in the country is to prevent incidences of such nature and cyanide spillages which tend to expose host mining communities to avoidable dangers. We want to use this medium to reiterate our call for all mining companies to adhere to responsible mining regulations.”

The two also called on mining sector regulatory agencies to effectively regulate the mining companies to avoid Regulatory Capture and Agency problems to ensure strict adherence to all regulations governing safe and responsible mining practices.

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