Some five farmers in the New Abirem District of the Eastern Region who were part of a demonstration against Newmont Akyem Mines, have sustained injuries after police fired rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse them.
[contextly_sidebar id=”gVmWBCun2fPJ9NcnHR3pikz6XzqNr8TK”]Farmers in the mining area have been agitating over the past three (3) years for a compensation package from Newmont following the takeover of their farmlands.
The demonstration, which started around 6:00 am saw the farmers block roads leading to the mining site at Adeisona, as they burnt car tires to prevent the workers from going to the site.
Police officers who were called to restore order allegedly fired rubber bullets and teargas to disperse the charged farmers.
The injured farmers are currently receiving treatment at the Abirem Government Hospital.
Speaking to Citi News, a farmer who participated in the demonstration said “They fired at the crowd to make way for workers of the mining company to assess their site. At a point, we realized the police did not come to protect, instead to fight against us.”
Another farmer said: “No mining company has come here before them so we were unaware of the implications of their presence and had very little knowledge of what to do so we accepted their compensation without question, but we soon realized were cheated.. there were legal lapses in our agreements. We found out they gave us only a year’s compensation. Following the legal tussle, it was agreed we had a case and Newmont owed us more than we were offered, but for whatever reasons, they refused to pay us our due.”
One other farmer said: “I was present when everything unfolded. Newmont always tried to stop us from demonstrating by giving us false hopes. They even convinced us to withdraw the matter from the court.”
By: Marian Ansah & Neil Nii Kanarku/citinewsroom.com/Ghana