Dr. Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe, a Ghanaian politician and statesman has stated that a total commitment by all stakeholders and the Ghanaian populace is the only way the menace of ‘galamsey’ can end.
Speaking on the ongoing fight against illegal mining, he said, in ensuring the menace ends and the environment is restored, citizens have to behave as real patriots.
The politician advised that government has to instill the spirit of patriotism;and engage the grassroots if the fight against ‘galamsey’ will be successful.
“One thing the late J.J Rawlings did when he came to power and helped him survive for long in the Ghanaian political space was that he had a network for intelligence gathering which run through the entire nation, even in the most remote villages. To solve this problem, we need to engage the grassroots. They witness the destruction firsthand and if we work with them, they can be a wealth of information to help government end the menace.”Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe
He then called for the involvement of chiefs in the fight against ‘galamsey’. This, he explained, is because most of these persons engaged in illegal mining activities are foreigners who are given parcels of land to mine by chiefs and receive support from communities in which they operate.
“We cannot end ‘galamsey’ without involving chiefs and members of the community. No matter the strength of the military, this fight cannot be won because they cannot stay in these communities indefinitely.”Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe
No drastic change in galamsey fight
Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe further noted that although government has been fighting the menace for years now,;there has been no drastic changes as government officials eventually release these illegal miners, especially foreigners, without pressing charges. Also
“If my memory serves me right, Aisha Huang was arrested;for engaging in illegal mining but how did she escape prosecution?”Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe
Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe who supports the burning of seized excavators from illegal miners is of the view that if the military does not destroy these equipment, the illegal miners will come back.
He then averred that if the nation has genuine District Chief Executives and Police Commissioners in office with support from chiefs and the people, the fight against ‘galamsey’ will be won.
The government of Ghana has renewed its efforts to fight the ‘galamsey’ menace. In the quest to end the menace, it recently deployed some military officers to these mining communities with the mission to arrest and destroy equipment belonging to these illegal miners.
Various stakeholders have also pledged their unwavering support to quell the menace. Notable amongst them is the Asantehene, Otumfuor Osei Tutu II who has pledged his support to the fight. He disclosed that he will sanction chiefs involved in illegal mining to help end the fight.
The Minister for Lands and Natural Resource, Samuel Abu Jinapor has also reiterated government’s determination to work closely with all stakeholders to curb illegal mining and promote sustainable and responsible mining at all levels.