The Western Regional Minister Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah is reiterating his commitment to fight against illegal mining activities in the region
According to him, the Western Regional Coordinating Council has rolled out some pragmatic measures to flash out operations of illegal miners in the region.
Mr. Okyere Darko-Mensah made the remarks when he and his entourage visited the Shama District Assembly to interact with the officials as part of his two-day working visit to some MMDAs in the Western region.
He revealed that some measures to get rid of Galamsey activities in the region, the Coordinating Council has resolved to constantly patrol the river bodies and the forest reserves to making them become no-go areas for the galamseyers.
“We have adopted an anti-galamsey approach as a way of protecting the region and also ensure that there is sustainable mining in the region… we have agreed that red zones that are river bodies and forest reserves should be a no-go areas for miners and no mining activities should be done around critical national installations like roads, railway lines and telecommunication mass.”
According to him, the Coordinating Council will frequently organize swoops to arrest, prosecute and burn excavators found at illegal mining sites.
“The position of WRCC now is to burn and destroy any excavator found on any illegal mining site, this is to deter the so-called big men’s investment in the destruction of our lands and water bodies.”
The Minister furthered by instructing the various District Mining Committee to set up community task force to protect the various forest reserves and water bodies, galamsey menace.
He said, “currently the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources have trained young men and women specialized to protect our water bodies and as a district, you have to incorporate them in your activities.”
However, Mr. Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah admonished miners who have been given license to operate to comply with the rules and regulations.
He asked them to uphold the mining ethics for a sustainable mining, adding that all those mining in the region should desist from using mercury and children in their activities…..they must ensure high safety standards at their sites.
Some areas, the Ministers visited include; Keda ceramics, Macro Polo Ceramics and Roland Rice Factory.
He was accompanied by the Member of Parliament for Shama, Lawyer Ericson Abarkah, Mr. Ebenezer Dadzie, DCE for Shama, Chief Director of Western Regional Coordinating Council, Frederick Agyeman, Heads of Departments among other government officials.