The Ranking Member on Parliament’s Mines and Energy Committee, Adam Mutawakilu has lamented over the government’s failure to institute a full-scale investigation into the missing excavators.
Hundreds of excavators seized, during the fight against illegal mining were reported missing.
Speaking to Citi News, the Damango MP said a prospective government of the NDC will re-open the matter for investigations.
“The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources decided to keep it on their own and almost all the excavators got missing. It has become clear that party apparatchiks, executives, ministers, appointees shared it among themselves. Ex-President, John Mahama has promised in the manifesto that, when voted into power, we will investigate, retrieve and return to them to the owners.”
When asked why the committee has not taken up the matter, Mr. Mutawakilu disclosed that the limited powers of the committee prohibit it to do more in ensuring due diligence.
“As a Ranking Member, I have made follow-ups to ensure that the proper thing is done, but they are not doing it. The Mines and Energy Committee has a limit that it can go. It cannot instruct executives to do anything. It can only appeal. But when John Mahama comes, he has executive powers to direct any institutions or body to ensure that the right thing is done. And this will be done transparently”, he added.
The NDC has described the government’s fight against galamsey as a failure because of several actions by government appointees and the issue of missing seized equipment.
Already, various bodies have called on the government to provide details on the progress or otherwise made on the fight against galamsey, with the NDC, demanding for a public exhibition of the seized excavators.
The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), on the other hand, has absolved itself from any wrongdoing insisting the fight against the menace is in full force.
Stop politicising galamsey issues, missing excavators – NPP to NDC
Already, the NPP has advised that the fight against illegal mining popularly known as “galamsey” should be depoliticized.
The menace according to the party, affects all and thus a collective effort is needed to tackle it.
This appeal came on the back of accusation by the opposition NDC that the government has failed to deal with illegal mining; a situation that is adversely affecting the country.
Director of Communications for the NPP, Yaw Buaben Asamoa said all hands must be on deck to end galamsey.
“We are aware that, the allegations of the missing excavators have brought the issue of galamsey to the fore. Happily, the matter has been referred to the police. We expect institutions of enforcement to be bold about it. Ideally, we would have wished the NDC leadership will deal with us rather than engage in petty politics that divide us. We believe that this should have been bi-partisan so that we deal with it in the context of challenges that face all of us and in a better way. Typical of the NDC, they have reduced this whole thing into three things – blame the president, scream loudly that the solution is not working and seek for the vote of the people without any alternative.”