President Akufo-Addo has reiterated his commitment to fighting illegal small-scale mining, popularly known as ‘galamsey’ in the country.
According to him, he will expend his capacity and power to bring the risk associated with it to an end in his second term.
The President further revealed that, major rivers such as the Birim and Ankobrah have been polluted. This, he explained is due to the activities of illegal small-scale miners. As such, measures will be put in place to ensure that future generations are not deprived of natural resources.
He further averred that, the measures are currently being threatened by galamsey.
“We’ve seen what has happened to River Birim, Ankobrah and other major water bodies. I’ll put in a lot of effort into the galamsey fight for Ghanaians to know that I’m serious about the fight so that we can bequeath to the next generation the gold, water and other resources we inherited from our forefathers.
“I intend to do everything within my power in this second term to bring this galamsey menace to a conclusion in Ghana”.
President Akufo-Addo, in 2017, declared that he was prepared to put his presidency on the line in the fight against galamsey.
President made a victim of galamsey fight
In January this year, Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, revealed that government’s interest in fighting against galamsey has made it a subject of victimisation.
Kojo Oppong Nkrumah further noted that, President Akufo-Addo has equally had his share of denial.
“President Akufo-Addo has himself been a victim of this fight against galamsey. The reality is that there are so many people internally and externally involved in this galamsey who end up fighting any president who desires to do a good job at it.”
His reaction followed concerns raised after the President had charged all to be open-minded about putting an end to galamsey.
“The point the President was making is that we have to come around the table as leaders and have a conversation that this is not because it feeds my party or it could give my party a political gain, therefore, let me seek to make partisan political capital out of it.”
Collective collaboration to ending illegal mining
Mr. Oppong further averred that President Akufo-Addo will not support such a move as he is keen on putting an end to galamsey.
“Because if we do that, then we collectively lose, that’s the conversation the president is asking us to have because he takes his presidency on the line, he has taken bullets for it, he’s lost parliamentary seats.”
Additionally, he explained that the incumbent government had lost some votes in the just-ended polls because of the campaign against the illegal actions.
“I hear people ask how come your margin dropped from 900 thousand to 500 thousand?
“We (NPP) are clear in our minds that the fight against galamsey is one of the reasons. If you look at the returns for many of the galamsey areas, they voted heavily against the president and his candidates because at the same time, while even internal party persons were sabotaging the fight; you also have people on the other side of the political device.”
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