The government has banned the manufacturing of changfang machines used by illegal miners on water bodies..
Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, George Mireku Duker, who announced this, said, any one who flouts the order would be arrested and prosecuted in accordance with law.
He gave the directive Friday when he inaugurated a 40-member Ghana National Small-Scale Miners Association taskforce in Kumasi.
George Mireku Duker said government would crackdown on all persons or group engaged in the production of changfang motors to aid illegal mining activities on river bodies.
The Deputy Minister indicated the taskforce will immediately work to curb illegal mining on rivers, including the Ankobra.
Just yesterday, George Mireku Duker said, several changfang machines were destroyed by the Military taskforce on river Ankobra.
He also announced the formation and inauguration of Regional taskforce to support the current operation on river bodies.
The Deputy Minister said the Minerals Commission is making available five speed boats (Multi purpose vessels) to compliment the efforts of the taskforce and charged the team to devote themselves to the task ahead devoid of extortion from the public.
With the National Security, Military, Navy and the National small scale miners engaged in a joint operation to tackle mining on the Ankobra, Mireku Duker was sure of a successful outcome saying, “you know the rudiments already. Help us to clean up the the small scale mining sector.”
He emphasized that government would intensify its initiatives for fighting illegal mining to curb the menace in the small scale mining sector.
On his part, the Vice President of the Ghana National Small-Scale Miners Association, Sampson Kofi Wiredu, commended government for the bold steps so far in curbing and controlling illegal mining and assured that the taskforce will work to support the government and the country.
He charged members of the taskforce to work to justify their involvement and said, “if the country sees your good works, it will reward you.”
He however, pleaded with the Ministry to speed up its support to the taskforce for smooth operations going forward.
Present at the inaugural ceremony were the Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Benito Owusu Bio, Ag. CEO of Minerals Commission, Mr. Martin Ayisi and the President of the Ghana National Small-Scale Miners Association, Mr. Philip Akufo.
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