The Communications Director of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Yaw Buaben Asamoa has downplayed calls by the Minority in Parliament for the arrest of the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng.
Yaw Buaben Asamoa said Prof. Frimpong-Boateng’s integrity is intact, despite allegations that he is complicit in the disappearance of some seized mining excavators following the publication of a leaked video.
Speaking to Citi News, Buaben Asamoa said the Minister was only facilitating community mining and not promoting illegal small-scale mining as being suggested.
“Professor Frimpong-Boateng’s integrity, as far as this difficult office [Environment Ministry] is concerned, to me, is intact… As we speak, some of the excavators have been found and beyond that, people have been arrested. It is important that we appreciate the fact that people have been arrested and they include ruling party members,” he said.
Mining calls for arrest
The Minority in Parliament has been calling for the arrest of the Minister over his alleged culpability in the missing excavators’ saga.
The Ranking Member of the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament, Adam Mutawakilu has called for the arrest of Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng for his alleged role in the disappearance of the excavators and other equipment seized from some illegal miners at the peak of the fight against illegal mining in the country.
“He [Frimpong-Boateng] should be the one who should be arrested for first of all breaching the law and paving the way for others,” the MP told the media.
“He didn’t follow the law and as a result, the constituency chairman [and] regional chairman, now have the opportunity to take part in the vanishing and sale of these excavators,” Mr. Mutawakilu added.
But Buaben Asamoa said the Minister cannot be cited in any corrupt deal.
“There is absolutely nothing wrong with Frimpong-Boateng facilitating community mining options for those people. I heard on that tape distinctly that [he said] they should go and find out from the [NPP] Ashanti Regional Chairman’s [Wontumi’s] concession [to see if it could be used]. The word concession was used, and that is a legal license to access mining lands and therefore Wontumi’s concessions are legal,” he said.