The Health and Safety Committee, which was established to study Ghana’s mining sector’s health and safety regime, is urging the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources to empower the Minerals Commission to punish mining corporations that break the law.

Speaking at a handing over ceremony at the Ministry of Lands, Committee Chair, Professor Richard Amankwa said this follows the Committee’s discovery that many mining companies invited to provide their health and safety plans failed to do so.

The Committee was formed in the aftermath of the explosion at Appiatse, which killed 13 people and injured several others.                                                                                               

Health and Safety Committee on Appiatse incident calls on the Minerals Commission to crack the whip on mining companies flouting the law

According to Committee Chair, Professor Richard Amankwa, the study will be an important document that helps guide issues of health and safety in Ghana’s mining sector.

“Managing the health and safety of this very dynamic mining industry that we had initial discussions with the chief executive officer, they are 14 measures that have already taken some of the issues, he indicated that he’s observed them and some action is already going on in those directions, including some issues that I don’t want to go into details here. I believe that as we present this report today with the action already going on you let them continue with the work that they are doing in the industry on behalf of the Committee.”

Again, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, lauded the Committee members for their hard work and involvement.

“The Chairman of the Committee stated that substantial work has been done on this topic, and the overview they’re providing us shows that this will be a highly valuable study that will lead matters concerning the health and safety of our country’s mining sector.

Given the expertise, we couldn’t have put together a better team than we did when I formed a Committee. The recommendation and findings of this study will be taken seriously by the government, and we will pursue them.”

In addition, the Ministry will examine the report and arrive at our own judgments or viewpoints on its contents, however, it is unlikely that all of the findings and recommendations will be adopted.

After all, the goal in Ghana is to create a mining business that is fit for purpose, serves the people that is safe and beneficial to the national economy.”