The Ashanti Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Bernard Antwi Boasiako, alias Chairman Wontumi, has urged the public to disregard media reports suggesting that he was engaged in illegal mining activities.
According to him, his company Akonta Mining Limited has all the required documentation to engage in large-scale mining.
Speaking in a television interview Monday on Wontumi TV, Antwi Boasiako said one of the leases granted to his company would expire in 2035.
He said he had four concessions in Samreboi, one for prospecting and three others which were leases.
Listen to the interview below;
His comments come after the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources directed Akonta Mining Limited to stop operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest with immediate effect.
Related: OccupyGhana pens letter to Lands Minister: Enforce the law against Akonta Mining Ltd.
According to the Ministry, even though Akonta Mining Limited has a mining lease to undertake mining operations in some parts of Samreboi, outside the Forest Reserve, “the company has no mineral right to undertake any mining operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve”.
The Ministry in a statement issued on Friday, September 30, 2022, said the sector minister, Samuel Abu Jinapor, has directed the Forestry Ministry to, “forthwith, ensure that the company does not carry out any operation in the Forest and to take the necessary action against any person found culpable in this matter”.
“Our records show that Akonta Mining Ltd, on August 25, 2022, applied for a Mining Lease to undertake mining operations in the said Forest Reserve. By a Ministerial Directive, all reconnaissance, prospecting, and/or exploratory activities in Forest Reserves in the country are suspended, except in exceptional circumstances.
“Although this directive does not affect mining in Forest Reserves, Akonta Mining Limited’s application has not been determined. Accordingly, any alleged activity being undertaken by the company in the Forest Reserve is illegal”, it stated.