Galamsey kingpin, Aisha Huang

The former Convener for the Media Coalition Against Galamsey (MCAG), Dr Kenneth Ashigbey, has described the return of ‘galamsey kingpin’ Aisha Huang in the mining space as leadership failure in the fight against ‘galamsey’.  

“I said that day, that this woman that has been left off the hook was going to go and come back, and it is not surprising that she did. This was somebody with serious connections,” he said during an interview at the launch of the 8th edition of Flamingo Awards.  

“We really need to get leadership up and doing and say that this thing about galamsey must stop. We need the executive to act but when we define leadership, we should not restrict it to the President and Minister in Accra,” he said, urging the media to keenly follow the case to its logical conclusion.  

Before the filing of a Nolle Prosequi in 2018 that led to her release and subsequent deportation, Aisha and her compatriots were on May 9, 2017, arraigned before court for engaging in illegal small-scale mining at Bepotenten in the Amansie Central District in the Ashanti Region.  

She was charged with three counts of undertaking small-scale mining operations, providing mining support services without valid registration with the Minerals Commission and the illegal employment of foreign nationals.  

These were contrary to Section 99 (1) of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703); the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703), and the Immigration Act, 2000 (Act 573).  

The other four accused persons were charged with disobedience of directives given by or under the Immigration Act, 2000 (Act 573).  

Upon her rearrest for illegally entering the country and mining without a license, the 47-year-old ‘galamsey kingpin’ was remanded into lawful custody by an Accra Circuit Court last Friday after the court preserved her plea because there was no Chinese interpreter.   

She is facing a charge of mining without a license and engaging in the sale and purchase of minerals without a valid license.   

Her accomplices; John Li Hua, Huang Jei and Huaid Hai Hun, have been charged with engaging in the sale and purchase of minerals without a license.