Chairman of the Environment Committee in Parliament, Yaw Frimpong Addo, says he cannot give the President an “excellent” mark over his performance in the fight against illegal small scale mining popularly known as ‘galamsey’.

This follows intense criticism from the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) about what they describe as a lack of commitment on the part of the government, to rid the country of the menace which has destroyed hectares of arable land and water bodies.

The two major political parties have over the past few days traded words as to whose administration has done the most to bring an end to the challenge.

Members of the Inter-Ministerial Taskforce on Illegal Mining insist the fight is being won.

But the NPP Member of Parliament for Manso Adubia, however, says he will score the president about 50%.

“We should give credit where it is due but I can never sit anywhere and say the President has failed. I will give him anything above 50%. He has gone up a little bit but because he was let down, it’s been quite tough and difficult,” Mr Frimpong said.

The committee chairman also explained that “There is no way I will say it has been excellent because some people have let him down.”

War of words

The (NDC, on Sunday, held a press conference at the River Pra in the Eastern region to highlight the government’s failure to deal with the menace.

Addressed by the party’s Communication Officer Sammy Gyamfi, event focused “on the havoc of the failed galamsey fight and President Nana Akufo-Addo’s role as Co-Chair of the SDGs Advocates group.”

But Director of Communications for the NPP, Yaw Buaben Asamoah believes the inactivity of the NDC while in power, contributed immensely to the perpetuation of the canker, which he says the current administration is working towards improving.

Could both political parties be involved in the setbacks recorded in ‘galamsey’ fight?

The anti-galamsey taskforce Wednesday, confirmed the arrest of five persons in relation to illegal mining at Akwatia in the Eastern Region.

Speaking on Joy FM’s Newsnite Wednesday, the leader of the Special Monitoring, Evacuation and Operation Team of Operation Vanguard, Nana Yaw Boadu, confirmed the arrested persons were affiliated to the two biggest political parties.

Two of them are New Patriotic Party (NPP) members and three are the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) members, Mr Boadu, said.

He did not disclose the identities of the persons but added Members of Parliament from both sides of the aisle are also on their radar in the fight against illegal mining.

He said logistics, including excavators, were seized from them and they would soon be sent to Accra.