The Member of Parliament for Ellembelle constituency who doubles as member of the Energy and Mines Committee of Ghana’s Parliament, Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah paid a surprised visit to the illegal mining (galamsey) site at Ankasa-Ewereko community in the Ellembelle North of his constituency.
The MP had a tip-off of ongoing illegal mining activities in that area and decided to go there by himself to ascertain the truth. The MP got to the site on Wednesday 13th April 2022 around 8:25am in the company of the Assembly Member for the Kwasikrom Electoral area Honourable Ishawu Mussah, some community members whose lands have been snatched and other media men including his personal aid.
The MP spotted ten men at the site some of whom are elders of the community and the NPP chairman Mr Kwakye for the area community who initially didn’t want to welcome the MP’s entourage.
The MP disclosed the purpose of his visit and asked to speak to the leader of the site. The workers on the field refused to disclose the name and whereabouts of their master but rather gave the name of the company as ‘Perkinspact’. The workers claim they were prospecting with permission from the Ellembelle District Assembly, the chiefs of Aiyinasi and Basake to undertake those activities. The site leader led the MP to the main site where the mining is taking place upon request by the Honourable Member.
The Honourable Member told the members of the illegal mining company about his visit i.e to find out about the safety of the rivers and cocoa farms. The MP further asked the site leaders whether they engaged the community members and cocoa farmers before engaging in their activities.
The MP further asked the cocoa farmers and the Assembly Member for proper briefings regarding the community engagement with the mining company.
The Assembly Member, Ishawu Mussah however stated that he has engaged the Odikro and the farmers on three occasions only to later find out that the Aiyinasi and Basake chiefs send the elders to the illegal mining company to pour libations for commencement of work.
Speaking to the aggrieved farmers, the MP assured them that the information he has gathered from the site will enable him dig into the matter. He also asked the farmers to be calm as he engaged the various stakeholders mentioned in the illegal mining authorization to get to the bottom of the issues.
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