Ghana: Pressure Mounts on Gov’t to Lift Ban on Small Scale Mining

Accra, February 2, 2018//-The Ghana National Association of Small-Scale miners (GNASSM) is putting pressure on government to lift the ban on small-scale mining as promised.

According to them, the government promised to lift the ban by the end of January 2018, therefore they are demanding government to fulfil its promise as soon as possible.

They indicated that, the ban which was necessitated by the adverse effects of illegal mining has pushed them to cause the arrest of about 632 illegal miners nationwide, hence contributing to the fight against illegal mining.

According to the General Secretary of the Small-Scale Miners Association Taskforce, Godwin Armah, “We’ve been able to arrest 632 illegal miners nationwide, and seized 5,431 Chanfan machines. If the ban is extended once again, before we realize, so many people who are into illegal mining will devise new strategies to continue mining illegally.”

The Lands and Natural resources minister, John Peter Amewu in December 2017, gave the assurance that government will lift the ban on small-scale mining by the end of January 2018 upon completion of an audit process and approval from Cabinet.

However, the Minister, John Peter Amewu, indicated that, there is more to be assessed and as well as look into  the small-scale mining processes before it’s finally lifted.

“The Waterbodies are still not clear, the Chanfan machines are still there, Night illegal operators now conduct their activities at night, although Operation vanguard and the Small-Scale taskforce is doing its best to apprehended the illegal miners, there’s still more work to do,” he noted.

He added that, the Inter-ministerial committee on mining was given the mandate to vet 1,350 registered small-scale miners all over the country in order for them to be regularized in their operation.

Meanwhile, the Committee is expected to make a submission to cabinet for assessment and the ban would be lifted based on the approval of Cabinet.

By Sammy Adjei, African Eye Report


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