OccupyGhana is asking the Lands Ministry to go a step beyond merely directing Akonta Mining Limited to halt operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest in the Western Region.
According to the pressure group, the ministry must invite the security agencies and the Attorney General into the fray by furnishing them with the information needed to ensure that perpetrators are punished.
“We therefore demand that you forthwith refer the facts and evidence in your possession that show that the said mining company is undertaking mining operations in breach of the Act, to the police and the Attorney-General for further investigations and prosecution of the company and its directors and officers.”
The Lands Ministry on September 30 directed mining firm, Akonta Mining Limited to stop operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest.
This was after two persons sustained gunshot wounds at Samreboi in the Western Region after a section of the youth reportedly prevented personnel of Akonta Mining Limited from sending more mining equipment into the Tano Nimri Forest reserve.
The mine is owned by NPP’s Ashanti Regional Chairman, Bernard Antwi Boasiako popularly called Chairman Wontumi.
But OccupyGhana says even though the reaction is laudable, there were also some concerns raised in the communique such as the fact that the said company is undertaking the mining operations without a mining lease.
“While congratulating you on this step, we would be taken aback if that was all you did.”
This, per the pressure group, is enough grounds to pursue the case in accordance with the law.
“If the company is engaged in the activities that you have alleged, then it is committing an offence that is punishable by fines and prison terms between 15 and 25 years,” the group said in a statement.
JoyNews investigations recently revealed ongoing destruction to the Tano Nimri Forest Reserve despite the government’s declaration it has not given any entry permit into the forest.
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